I am known by my family and friends to be a traveller who embarks on vast amounts of research before departing. I am a supporter of the philosphy `If you fail to plan, you plan to fail’. Once, I Google Street Viewed my entire way around Paris before even arriving at Charles De Gaulle airport. Needless to say, I knew EXACTLY how to get to the Louvre sans a map or guide in hand…. But, sometimes when travelling, no matter how much research you have done beforehand, things can turn pear shaped…and very quickly.
There is nothing more solemn and stark a reminder of how ephemeral life is than someone’s death. It takes all your previous perspectives, plans and ideas and turns them totally inside out and upside down.
Recently, while in the Western Cape which had been ‘home’ to my grandmother (my Dad’s mom) for eighty plus years, we drove passed the exact spot at which we had previously scattered her ashes 6 short months ago, and all the memories came flooding back…
This past weekend I was overcome with a bad case of what I call the ‘wanderlust woes’ or the ‘PLOM’ (an acronym for ‘poor little old me’).
“Why can’t I be in PAAAAAAARIS?!”
“Why does she get to go to Rome AGAAAAAAAAIN?!”
“Why does he get a new car aaaaaaaaaaaand a new house?!”
Would you believe it… After the 1970’s not-so-hipster green Ford escort broke down on our previous wine tasting excursion in Stellenbosch, and the ensuing treacherous doorless train experience, I went on yet ANOTHER rendezvous with my friend, Jenna, and her car, named, Bertha… and a train, again!
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Once in a while, I enjoy a glass of red wine with my current preference being either a dry rose or a Blanc de noir. Hardly able to call myself a quaffer or a sommelier, I felt apprehensive and somewhat intimidated when I was invited to go wine tasting with a friend, Kirsten, who is currently studying her Msc in WINE BUSINESS, in the heart of wine country, in Dijon France!
What do you do when you find yourself driving through the leafy town of Stellenbosch? You suddenly slam on breaks…and make sure you spend the entire day there. That’s my honest advice, right there. If possible…. never leave! What more could you possibly want than mountainous views, a rich diversity of fauna and flora and vineyards that give one the illusion of being in the heart of Tuscany?
On most sunny Saturdays in South Africa I am up early in the mornings to work on projects, spend time with the family or do some shopping. However, on this particular Saturday I slept in. I’m not talking a little ‘lie in’ here. I’m referring to a leisurely and languishing slothful slumber! Anyway, when I finally woke up, I was in the mood for a continental experience.