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Cape Town to Johannesburg

I'm finally off on my adventure!

View Manic Mission Africa on ManicDave's travel map.

27th - 29th November 2006

The last 48 hours – Cape Town
It took me six hours on Monday to complete my exams and even though I would only officially graduate four months later, I now considered myself a Journalist!
I brokered a 60 % discount with Fuji film, with no strings attached, and received a ‘lucky packet’ of free film.
I purchased the last of my medical supplies - thermometer, bandage, eye drops, and mosquito repellant.
I vacated my bedroom (I live in a commune) and got rent from Petra, the new gorgeous German tenant.
I wasn’t sure if I should have rented my Mini as I had three last minute requests to rent it. I decided that is would be much safer to leave it in the garage.
My brother gave me some of his leftover foreign currency and then the astrology section warned me against spending it all at once – something I always did!
For my iPod I got an extra power pack from Ryan and an iTrip from Adam. I would now be able to tune any radio into my iPod, enabling everyone in the bus/taxi/ferry to hear my music).
I invited some friends over for a ‘last supper’ and to empty my fridge
We discussed my packing and argued over the reasons for taking my Mpeg 4 player and hair gel? I got rid of the gel!
I broke the cheap thermometer while trying to get the mercury to rise. I placed it in boiling water, to check if it worked, and didn’t realize that my friend had put it on ice!
I was playing with the mercury in the bottom of the tea cup and it reminded me of the Terminator 3 where the evil terminator ‘flows’ back together after being blown up!
They freaked out – apparently mercury is very dangerous to your health – I thought it was cool nevertheless.

Wednesday 29th
My sister Cindi suggested that I take her big travel wallet – I agreed, especially because it fitted in with my friend Dave’s idea of a ‘fake wallet’. He got the idea from a book I gave him called ‘Adventure Capitalist’, about a rich bloke who turns his yellow Mercedes SLK into a 4x4 adventure vehicle, with a matching trailer in tow!
The ‘fake wallet’ was used as a standby – to give to the crook/mugger/policeman/corrupt official/etc. It should look like a normal, well used wallet – bursting at its seams with cash, credit cards, receipts, id, etc.
Inside the cheap fake wallet, I put all my loyalty reward cards such as Edgars, Woolworths, et al; lot’s of small denomination currency 50 notes of five different currencies - all of them only worth hundreds instead of thousands.
I made hiding places in different pieces of luggage so that if anything was stolen I wouldn’t have all my eggs in the one basket that disappears.
I wrapped my backpack in plastic so that it would be easier to transport on the plane. It was almost impossible to pick up!
I didn’t get any sleep because I was busy packing until 03:00, cleaning, showering, etc, and then off to the airport.
My pack weighed 23kg – I was quite surprised – it felt like 50kg.

The lady at the security check-in spent 10 minutes going through my film – all 42 rolls of it. She opened and closed every one of them – after I refused to let them x-ray it. She even made me take a picture with each camera – just to make sure they really were cameras and that I wasn’t some self-hating Jewish al-Qaeda operative!
The plush leather seats on the plane had just six inches between the barf-bag-magazine-emergency-landing-card-pocket-holder-thing y (the back of the seat in front of me) and the front of my seat cushion. (I’m serious – I measured it!) I had to lift my knees and loosen my belt in order to fit in.

Shortly after take off I had 40 quick winks and woke up 20 minutes later slobbering all over myself.
The new Mango ‘Juice’ magazine was quite entertaining:

Pieter Dirk Uys said:
“My South Africa is not Australia, although when you go to Ozland you are staggered by the shrill kugel tones that bleat forth from a legion of dust-free 4x4’s. Many South Africans emigrated to Australia in the last few decades and the IQ of both countries went up!”
I particularly enjoyed that one.

Some other interesting facts from the mag:
Bloemfontein, the town where I was born is called Mangaung in Sesotho, which means “The place where cheetahs dwell”
Kimberley got street lights in 1882 – even before London.
China shares its 22,117km of borders with 14 countries: Russia, Mongolia, India, Myanmar, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Bhutan, Laos, Tajikistan and Afghanistan.
Harry Potter’s home address is: 4 Privet Drive, Little Whinging.

Mango is proud that:
“Handcuffed passengers won’t be seated next to you – we don’t transport prisoners of any kind”

Maybe they should have taken on a few criminals – they only had 48 passengers on board their Boeing 737-800 which has seats for 189. Apparently the reason for this was that they didn’t want to stress out their new staff! To combat in-flight fatigue, they recommended that you stand on your toes, shrug your shoulders, and twist your neck. You can’t do much else without hitting something or someone.

Posted by ManicDave 04:29 Archived in South Africa Tagged backpacking

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