On Thursday I took a colleague of Peter's on Safari...we invited him to stay at our house while he was here with work. He's a good friend of Peters but I'd only met him the once in 2007.
We set off at 7am for a 2 hour journey to Pilensburg, we passed Sun City and got slightly lost, drove through a township and stopped for a document and vehicle check by the police..I asked 'why' they replied 'because we asked' 'OK' I explained I was English and would like this exp;aining and they were very helpful and polite and after checking our documents they gave us directions for the game reserve.
We had a good day, dfriving round the reserve looking for the elephants...I personally am of a mind that the elephants are either a) not real or b) 2ft tall and hidden in the grass...
but we did see Rhinos, Zebras, Giraffes and the best of all a Leopard.
We saw the majority of animals towards the end of the day as the sun was setting and they made their way towards the watering holes...the Leopard was just standing in the middle of the road, we were craning our necks looking for the elephants, it hung around long enough for us to lean out the car and take photos.
So slightly behind schedule we began our journey home...the gate ws locked we were no more than 10 minutes late..security indicated for us to step out of the car to inform us that they had no key, no radio and no mobile phone and we would just have to sit and wait till someone/anyone arrived...not impressed, there were wild dogs nearby plus you know lions etc...we sat, we waited, we laughed, we called home...'no really, we didn't do it on purpose'
35 mins later we were on our way home, 2 hours in the dark, the first part of the journey I was apprehesive, driving through built up areas on a singletrack road, but then we reached the N4 and I relaxed...N1....27kms to go, Peter is reheating tea..my guest informs me the car sounds a little funny and bang, at 120kms per hour in the outside of 3 lanes, my tyre blows, a controlled stop on the hard shoulder. The car stops we get out and quickly climb the barrier...the traffic is very fast...there's a break in the traffic so we grab food, blanket, personal items. We're near a toll booth, can't get through to OUTsurance so call Peter to explain...he sighs...and a few minutes later they call back.
'where are you Ma,am?'
'ermmmm I don't know,GPS says 27km north of home on N1 just past the 'What does it say on the toll Ma'am?'
I'm not a lot of use at this point and reply 'E Tag and Cash Only'
They finally establish where we are and reply 'a vehicle will be with you in 33 minutes'
We sit on the grass, the toll booth security check on us, OUTsurance call us, the tow truck company call to confirm they are on their way....
...and 17 hours after we set off, we arrive back home....still speaking, thankfully.