Out and about – steeples and crescents

The little dorp (village) of Goedverwacht – where colourful fruit trees and gardens line the main road through town – lies around the back side of the Piketberg Mountain with a river running through it. It’s like something out of Eden. The “townsquare” an enormous vegetable patch. And the old missionary church steeple standing sentry.

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It was the Snoek en Pataat Fees. The annual highlight of the town. Shiny SUVs and clapped out Datsuns moved in in droves. Psychadelic leisure wear and the Rastafarian tricolore echoed the radiance of the flora and the fare. Barrows of veggies and pots of corn cobs hinted at the verdure of the location.

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Candyfloss and koeksisters sent the children running wild. And the queue for the snoek-en-pataat wrapped it all up like a great big gift. This was country at its best.

Nothing can beat the taste of traditional Western Cape apricot jam-grilled fresh Atlantic snoek with a great big roasted sweet potato and a chunk of fire-baked bread. “Want dis lekker!” called out the T-shirts of festival staff. And nothing beats washing it down with fresh, ice cold mountain water. Of course a beer could do the trick too…..

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With a belly full of local fare, it was time to tackle the fynbos and rhenosterveld to climb a summit that was rarely summited. It was the search for the perfect view. Kitted up with as little excess baggage as possible (a few Mawu aquasacs really does the trick), we headed into the unknown.

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Weaving our way through the dormant fruit orchards, we made it half way up with relative ease. Perhaps a wheeze or two carrying the extra lunchtime load…..

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Then it was time to veer of the path. What looked like knee-height bushel quickly grew to head-height and protea branch face-lashings became common-place. It was great to be part of the bush. It was like a big bear-hug from an old uncle, rich with its own peculiar scent.

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Nature even gave us a peak into her jewelry box with a couple of real natural gems.

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There’s something about getting to the top. It can never be underestimated how beautiful the view can be from up there. And this was no disappointment. Valleys of green holding on to a really big blue sky. Perfectly linear fruit orchards chopped into the earth, row upon row. And beyond it all, way beyond, we could just make out the ocean. They say on a perfectly clear day you can even see Table Mountain.

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