Day 17 Mon 23rd May 2011
Today we are up early as we are leaving Hermanus to head onto Oudtshoorn. This is our first 'long' trip on the Baz Bus, and all in all the 5 hour trip isn't to bad. We arrive in George only to find out that we have another hour and a half trip to get to Oudtshoorn. The shuttle from our hostel is the waiting for us as we arrive, so everything is nice and simple and it's just a case of moving our bags and sitting down! (We like it that way, however we know that things aren't going to be that easy in other places and we should make the most of it). We get ourselves checked in & put our names down for the Ostrich Braai that they are having tonight. Oudtshoorn is like the ostrich capital of South Africa. It quite weird seeing a field full of cows, mixed with ostriches! We do our first lot of backpacking washing & then go & sit out by the fire that is just being made & meet some fellow backpackers. The Ostrich kebabs get cooked in front of us over the fire & when we get to taste it, it is amazing, the meat just falls apart. Ostrich is pretty much like beef (probably why the cows and the ostriches get along so well), however it's healthier for you and contains less fat. The way to have it is rare to medium rare which suits us just fine! We make friends, over a few beers, with a guy called Hugo. He works at the hostel. Hugo's a cool guy and asks Dan if he fancies a game of pool, claiming that this is the way that he gets free beer at the hostel. Turns out that Hugo loses and ends up having to buy Dan a beer. Then Dan asks Hugo if he wants see how he gets free beer, he pulls out the cards, enough said.
Day 18 Tues 24th May 2011
Ostrich Farm Day!!
So we start the day be heading up to the Cango Caves (discovered in the Kangoo region of Outdshoorn) for a tour. There are two types of tours on offer, a regular tour and an adventure tour. The adventure tour consists of squeezing yourself into tight spaces, and due to the fact that we both swell up when we get trapped in, we decide to do the regular tour. We also get told a true story about a woman that got advised against it due to her size but decided that this offended her, so she went in anyway & got stuck, she was in there for 5 hours before they managed to somehow get her out. The Caves were discovered by a guy named Francis Von blah blah, lots & lots of years ago.
Inside are lots of different types of rock formations that were found and used by the 'Cavemen'. Concerts were also held in the caves however they had to stop them due to people destroying the formations. Algae is also a problem throughout the caves as it is produced through bodily sweat & people touching the formations. That's about all I can remember though.
So after this we head down to the Cango Ostrich Farm which is where the real fun begins. The first stop is to learn a little about Ostriches', feel their skin which is the second strongest type of leather available today & learn a little about the hatching process & how to tell if eggs are fertile or not. Then we get to go out & meet Betty the Ostrich. The girls get to have a picture taking hugging her & the boys get to have a kiss. We are then off to do the Ostrich riding. Dan can't resist and turns the camera on to film mode and starts to inverview me in front of everybody! He starts asking weather in looking forward to me ostrich riding experience, and as I havnt fully made up my mind as to weather or not I want to do it, I start to go a little red! Before long the trainer has cottoned on, and because no-one else is game, I find myself sat in the back of this huge bird holding on for dear life, it's so warm, you have to hold on very tight & lean back as far as you can. All of a sudden they take off the bag on its head & we are gone like a shot, it all happens so quickly. But it is so much fun, I'm so glad that I did it. We then head off to feed the Ostriches & get to have an Ostrich massage, both me & Dan do this, a bucket of food gets placed in our hands then you walk backwards & they all lean in over you to munch on the food (they are really greedy w***s) knocking your head about. You come away coved in grains of dust left from the food. We then get to stand on the eggs, which are so tough that they don't break. It was a really fun experience & when we get back to the shop Dan see's our guide with a pack of cards in his hands & just can't resist, I really wished id filmed it because the reaction was just fantastic.
After this we get onto our bikes as we have booked to do the cycle the rest of the way back to the hostel stopping along the way to go to the wildlife Park. It's a 14km bike ride which sounds really easy but on unsteady roads with traffic coming in both directions it's pretty scary. We stop at a tea hut to have some lunch & a rest then head onto the park. The clouds are seriously threating rain so much that it's not even funny. We have no idea how far we are when the heaven's just open up & it pours it down, we retreat into a private housing estate where there is a security office & the officer lets us wait there for the rain to die down a little. We find out that the Park is right next to here which is a bonus, so we chance it & head in. The park itself is lovely, you are so close to all the animals & there are walkways around the big cat area so you can see straight in, because the weather is cool most of the animals are out playing which is great. We get some amazing pictures & after the tour head back just to watch the lion's den, they are winging for their dinner & pacing up & down the cage. We decide to head back to the hostel as the clouds are rolling in again. Getting back on the bikes is a different story as our arses are killing us, we realize that these bikes are not comfortable at all but persevere & get back just as the heaven's once again open & it does not stop for a good 45mins. We crash down in front of the fire & that's pretty much where we stay for the rest of the night. We put our names down for Braai again & Gavin calls Dan over to give him some lessons on cooking Ostrich. Then we sit in from of the fire resting our aching bums for the night. All in all another great day.