About a month ago, we packed it up and took our show on the road for our first family vacation in Cape Town, South Africa. The bushbaby returned to her motherland.
This area of the world is GORGEOUS. While stationed here in Luanda, a visit to Cape Town is on the must do list. Our first day there, my eyes welled with tears. Such beauty exists! All on its own, such lush and natural beauty. I took over a thousand pictures but they never do justice. The air was so thick with salty oxygen, no trace of the bitter diesel fumes and steamy urine to which I’ve become accustomed. We could breathe deeply and fully for the first time in months.
We stayed at Chapman’s Peak Hotel in Hout Bay, just 20 minutes from the city center. I debated renting a 1-2 bedroom apartment but decided on a decent sized hotel room in the end. I may revisit that option in the future. We made it work with the hotel-furnished pack-n-play, but it would have been nice to have an actual door to shut once she was snoozing. Those of you who travel with kids, do you prefer to rent self-catering apartments?
Our immediate area was a fishing community with loads of fresh catch restaurants and fishmongers. Every morning the Bushbaby and Snakes would go for a nice long walk on the beach across from our hotel (pictured above) while I slept in or sipped coffee on our patio. We spent our days exploring the peninsula: penguins in Simons Town, a baboon sighting on our way to Cape of Good Hope, an ostrich farm, endless empty beaches, Table Mountain top vistas, shopping in the city. (Funny side note: while searching for a camera cord on the V & A Waterfront, I ran into this FSO, whom I immediately recognized from her blog! It’s a little weird to know so many intimate details of people’s lives when you’ve never even met them before. And a kinda creepy too, right?)
My one regret (rather predictably) is that we didn’t budget more time for the wineries. (Reason enough for a return visit!) We had rented a car for the 10 days we were there and drove the 45 minutes to the Stellenbosch countryside one Sunday afternoon. By the end of our ONE (and only….) winery visit, we were already reformulating our retirement plans. And I was the only one who had a glass of wine.
Now, with the news of our next post coming down the pipeline this week and only 4 more sleeps until the Bushbaby and I set off for the first stop (of 3) on the 2012 home leave whirlwind tour, excitement looms large! First stop: Denver. Second post……?…..stay tuned!