Monday, May 08, 2006


I arrived at 7:20 am at Johannesbury International, this moring of May 8. The airpot is going through a massive facelift. There is construction all over. I wondered why! I later learnt that the country is getting ready for the 2010 World Soccer Tournament. I also learnt later on that a new railway line is being constructed from Johannesburg to Pretoria for the same reason.

The drive from Johannesburg International to Pretoria took less than an hour. My first shock was how chilly the outside was. I soon reminded myself it is getting into the cool season now, Soth Africa being in the southern Hemisphere. What did I see on the way? The famous elephant grasses were as tall as you could imagine, the size of the elephant. My old geography knowledge returned. If the elephant grasses are as tall as can be expected, it is a sign that the wetaher has been good. And true to my observation, my chatty driver (from Friends of Africa Touring Company) confirmed that the year had been good in terms of rains. Food was ample and the tall grass was a testament of the good times. This warmed my heart. To crown it all, the hills on the way to Pretoria just reminded me of what I have been missing all these years of living on the more less flat landscape of the Canadian prairies. I saw the famous acacia trees, miombo woodlands and an occasional baobab tree.

I didn't realize how tired I was until I sat on the bed of the Farm Inn. Before sleeping, I decided to stroll around this gem. African birds greeted me. A bunch of warthogs were idling around. The Inn itself is built in an African style with a thatched roof. It is way out of Pretoria on what looks like a nature reserve. I am looking forward to eating supper. I am sure it is going to be mouth watering.

Family friends that I met 15 years ago in Scotland have invited me to visit with them tomorrow. I can't wait to see them.

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