Challenge Accepted: Bunny Chow- a Traditional South African Meal

I have not officially done a “challenge” in a while and decided that now is as good of a time as any.  Noel challenged me to write about South African food and Zelda challenged me to prepare a dish. I figure this counts as both! 🙂

I chose to prepare Bunny chow (a.k.a: bunny), a popular South African meal which, contrary to the name, does not include any rabbit whatsoever. It is actually a dish of curry served in hollowed out bread. Brant adores Bunny chow and has it often at a place close to his work on Fridays.

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I researched several recipes online and opted to take components of several different recipes to create my own version of a lamb and potato bunny chow. IMG_3319

Ingredients:

  • 1 package of fresh ciabatta rolls
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (I buy pre-minced)
  • 4 small red chillies, diced
  • 1.5 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 kg of boneless stewing lamb
  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp tumeric
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1.5 tbsp cape malay curry (can substitute 2 tbsp garam masala)
  • 1, 14oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 750ml chicken stock
  • 5 large potatoes peeled and diced into large chunks
  • salt to taste

Step-by-Step:

Dice the onion, garlic (if not using pre-minced), and chilli. Then, heat the oil over medium heat in a large sauce pot (the images will show me doing this step in a frying pan because frying things is my default, however, I did not consider how much liquid I would be using later on in the recipe and had to transfer to a pot eventually. So, to avoid the transfer step, start in a large pot- and remember that things like this are a reason that I am not a cooking blogger).

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Add onion, chilli, and garlic to the pot. Season with ground ginger and mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until garlic is fragrant.

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Add the lamb to the pan and brown for 5 minutes (it does not have to cook all the way through, just brown the outsides).

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While the meat is browning, empty out your spice cabinet by combining the required the spices (coriander, ground cumin, turmeric, paprika, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cape malay curry) in a small bowl.

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Add the combined spices to the meat in the pan and stir to coat the lamb. Allow to cook for 2-3 minutes.  Smells like curry!

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Now, as mentioned, if you did not prepare correctly, you will have to transfer the contents of the pan to a large pot.

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Crisis successfully averted. So now, confidently, add the sugar and tomatoes; then, stir to coat the lamb.

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Next, add enough chicken stock to just-cover the lamb (about 750mls).IMG_3344 IMG_3345

Bring to a boil, then lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.

While you are waiting, peel and dice the potatoes.

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When 30 minutes is up, add the potatoes. Return to a boil, then cover and simmer for 15-20 more minutes, or until the potatoes are soft and the lamb is tender.IMG_3348 IMG_3349 IMG_3352 IMG_3353

During this wait time, cut the top of your ciabatta roll and hollow out the inside. Be sure to leave some bread in the bottom to absorb the juices so the curry doesn’t leak out.  I saved the insides in a tupperware and served it on the side with the bunny chow. Brant said this was critical to sop up extra sauce.

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Then fill the empty bread bowl with the lamb curry.

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Top with some extra sauce and serve with the bread insides (on the outside) and a side of cole slaw.  I tried to be photographically sneaky and omit the fact that there is also a piece of chocolate cake on my plate- which admittedly is probably not part of this traditional meal. But, I have to be honest and admit its existence.  I will also admit it was delicious, and since it was purchased in South Africa, totally legitimate. 🙂

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Brant thought it was fantastic and wants it in the regular rotation. I am not a huge curry fan but thought it was good. I hope some of you try it out and report back to let me know what you think!

Love from South Africa! xoxoxoxo

Posted in cooking, Expat- General, Food in South Africa, housewife, meal planning, Tourism | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Legends Golf and Safari Resort

In July I planned a surprise weekend getaway for Brant. He had no idea where we were going until we arrived at Legends Golf and Safari Resort.  The draw to this destination for a quick vacation is their famous Extreme 19th Hole, which I booked prior to arrival.

The resort is a two-hour drive from Pretoria. On the way and we saw a herd of wildebeests and a giraffe.

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At check-in, we were given a map and keys to our room. The resort is spread out and you have to drive or take a shuttle everywhere you go, so we were thankful to have our own car. We found our room easily and were pleased that it was clean, spacious, and had a nice view.

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We spent the first afternoon exploring the resort. The scenery was beautiful and the atmosphere was very peaceful and relaxing.

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We signed up to play a full round of golf the next morning. I rented a set of golf clubs for me,  and managed to sneak Brants’ clubs in the car before we left.  Golf is not my sport at all. I averaged 10-12 shots per hole, but I managed an 8 on two holes and, somehow, one 5 (on a par 3)- so I call that a win for never taking lessons and having only playing a handful of times in my life.  I somehow managed to land in the sand on EVERY SINGLE HOLE- and that, unfortunately, is not an exaggeration.  We played the front 9 and then took a break to do the 19th hole before playing the back 9.

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The extreme 19th hole was a highlight of the trip. You take a helicopter to the top of the mountain and try to land a golf ball on the a green, shaped like Africa, 400 meters (~1,312 feet) below.

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Standing from the top you can see how far down you have to hit it. Technically, the hole is a par 3, but I’m sure you can tell that any gust of wind would throw you off track from that high in the air. They give you 6 balls to hit and they are numbered. You have a spotter down below to watch where you ball lands. If you don’t get your first ball in the fairway or on the Africa-shaped green, you have to take a drop. You get up to 5 drops on top of the mountain and then you have to save your last ball for a drop in the fairway. I used every single one of my drops, so my score was pretty high before I even left the top of the mountain.

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The helicopter ride was probably more fun than hitting the ball off the mountain. The pilot liked to spin the helicopter around and make you feel like you were free-falling. It was a little scary, but very memorable and fun.

Once we were on the ground, we had to locate our balls and finish the hole. In the pictures below, I was standing by the flag and aiming up at the mountain where we just hit the ball.

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The end result for this very extreme par 3? I got a 16 and Brant got a 13. It was fun, and to me, that was more important than my terrible score. 🙂

The next day we scheduled quad biking and archery.

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The biking was fun, but Brant thought we had to drive too slow and would back off so he could race back and catch up with us. We even saw some zebra while on the bikes but my camera was put away. Our faces were filthy after kicking up all of the red dirt for an hour.  I didn’t take any pictures of the archery, but will mention (brag) that I won the competitive game we played where we got points for specific places we hit on the target.

That evening we went on what was probably the most uneventful game drive ever in all of Africa. We saw a crocodile, a warthog, and some ducks. Our guide was terrible. We met up with people who were with us on the game drive at dinner afterwards, and we all agreed it was pitiful. Other groups saw a lot more than we did- so I think we just drew the bad straw and had a lacking guide. The scenery, as is often the case in Africa, was beautiful and my iPhone camera never does it justice.

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Brant was very pleased with this surprise kid-free vacation. We had a lot of fun, and would highly recommend the 19th hole.  Maybe if we get a chance to go again we would take the scenic helicopter ride since the pilot was so much fun.

Love from South Africa! xoxoxo

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One Year Later….

It is hard to believe we have been living in South Africa for one year now.

It really has been one entire year since we sold most of our belongings and packed everything we owned into 12 suitcases and flew across the world to start living somewhere neither of us had ever even visited before.

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The first two months spent living in a hotel searching for housing was pretty tough, as was having to resign my job, but after the initial shocks wore off, I can say that everything has worked out perfectly. We have been able to settle in nicely here and we really enjoy our house.

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Both kids talk about family all the time. We look at pictures often and talk about everybody.  Hayden talks mostly about Nana and Link. Natalie still carries her blankie and cheetah around. In fact, for awhile Natalie wanted to be called Edith, her middle name, after Nana. She talks about showing Memaw her flips on the computer.

When asked about their favorite trip in South Africa, both kids agreed that going to the beach was their favorite. They are both enjoying school and like all of their extra curricular activities.  We have enjoyed being able to travel and show the kids another part of the world and their culture.

To celebrate our one-year-expat anniversary on this blog, Brant and I will share some answers to a few of the most frequently asked questions we get from friends and family back home (his answers were not very detailed, but I tried to make up for it):

1) What have been some of your favorite experiences in South Africa this year?

Brant: Extreme 19th, Safari, Sun City particularly staying at the palace, and Durban.

Jennifer: My elephant kiss105,

riding the double-decker party bus to see Dave Matthews in Johannesburg:174 167 165 1631458648_582855951794132_1738760083_n1426172_582854878460906_1058994637_n,

Having the privilege to see Nelson Mandela at his public wake:013 027,

the safari in Klaserie with Willa and Elizabeth (the elephant charge was probably the most memorable!):

1044 103 519 021 226 419 437 950The Soweto Bike Tour:

10152572_10100434571003591_8066200859215034115_n and finally, riding in a helicopter to hit a golf ball off of a mountain for the extreme 19th hole at Legends Golf and Safari Resort. I have not blogged about this yet, but it is next I promise!

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2) What are some things you miss the most about home?

Brant: Mexican food and Newcastle, Biscuits

Jennifer: Easy access to friends and family, Thursday night dinner at Nanas, USTA league tennis, the US postal system and having an actual mailbox at my house (where mail is placed daily and not just scattered randomly about my driveway), Efficiency.

3) What has been difficult to get used to here?

Brant: Lack of efficiency and everything closes early

Jennifer: Pedestrians do not have the right of way here and people don’t let you cross. Real winners will try to run you over in parking lots (even if you are carrying your 2-year old daughter in one arm and a bag of groceries in the other).

4) What is something that has surprised you about South Africa?

Brant: That it’s almost impossible to get import beer here.

Jennifer: Traffic is always so crazy. People are so used to dealing with inefficiency, something that would create a major traffic jam in America does not even cause people to bat an eyelash here. They just drive in the grass and move on (or whatever the scenario requires).

5) Where is your favorite place to eat in Pretoria?

Brant: Taal the Indian place at silver oaks

Jennifer: Tin Roof, Koi, or any girly tea garden.

6) Where would you want to eat if you could teleport home right now?

Brant: Biscuits and gravy 🙂

Jennifer: Nana’s House

7)  Anything you want to tell friends/ family back home?

Brant: Hello.

Jennifer: Come visit us!

Time truly does fly. Love From South Africa! xoxoxoxo

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Recent Happenings: “Winter” 2014

I am proud to report that my new system of blogging in between books has seemed to work and I have been much better about writing lately.  This blog is dedicated to some of the small everyday pictures that I take and wanted to share (some of you who I am friends with on social media will have seen many of these- but some will be new for you also!).

We are in the middle of winter now and honestly, the lack of heat in the house has not been terrible. The mornings and late evenings are very cold and we run small space heaters throughout the house for warmth. The days have warmed up very nicely, usually into the 70s, and we can open all of the windows for a few hours.

Despite the winter, the kids were able to still show off some American pride on the 4th of July.

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Hayden achieved his first hole-in-one at mini golf recently.  Natalie had one too, although hers was obviously dad assisted. 😉

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We were able to keep our yearly Cadbury Egg Milkshake tradition alive this year despite being far away. I purchased a large quantity of eggs after Easter while I was still in America and brought them back. Always delicious!

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Brant and I have had some nice evenings out with friends. Since many of us live in the same neighborhood we will often get together with friends at each others homes or go out to dinner. Recently we attended a rugby game for a friends’ birthday.

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Hayden helping me grocery shop- he LOVES to go and ride standing on the back of the cart:

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Here are some pictures of the kids just being kids- they are at the age where they want you to take their picture and show it to them.

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Hayden adores all things Lego and will play for hours with them. He uses most of the spending money he earns on a new Lego kit of some sort.  He has also lost his second tooth, and now both lower teeth are missing.

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Interestingly , it is customary here for women to carry their children on their back, usually wrapped in a towel or blanket. Natalie has picked up on this and sometimes will ask to put her stuffed animals on her back.

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Sometimes on the weekend we take the kids in there for a nature walk. We have a game reserve in our neighborhood, stocked with impala, kudu, blesbok, and other deer-like animals.

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And of course our last family member, Ollie, is doing well. He completed his puppy class and next week has his basic obedience class test.  He has been a great fit for the family and loves playing with the kids.

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I know this blog is a random hodgepodge of items- but my purpose is to share these items, that are not necessarily events that, alone, deserve a full blog post.  Hope you enjoy!

Love from South Africa! xoxoxoxo

 

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Cube Tasting Menu Dinner

A  restaurant called Cube Tasting Kitchen in Johannesburg specializes in creating tasting menus, which are meals composed of small portions infused with many culinary highlights and special techniques.

A small group of us booked the 10 course tasting and our menu had 3 courses of appetizers, 3 main courses, a cheese plate, fruit plate, and 2 dessert plates. A more detailed description of our dinner menu can be found here: Cube Menu (10) Course Mar 2014

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Our first course highlighted cucumber: as a cocktail, a salad, a tea snack, and a sweet. IMG_2095

The cucumber sweet was a jell-o-ish candy texture. The relish salad was probably my favorite of the entire evening.  Most of the dishes throughout the evening had some sort of sauce or cream infusion that the chefs would explain before we tasted our dishes.

Course 2 was an egg dish with beetroot, asparagus, garlic, and aioli. I also really enjoyed this dish.

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Course 3 was a mushroom and custard dish that I thought tasted like you were eating french onion dip without the potato chips.

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Course 4 started the main course portion of the tasting. They served white fish and potato, with a green pea sauce.

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Course 5 was a prawn dish, which was my favorite entrée selection,  followed by a palate cleansing mango and chili frozen yogurt:

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Course 6, the last entrée, was a lamb, bulgur wheat, and lentil dish followed by a tomato, watermelon, and liquorice palate cleanser.

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By this point everyone was getting really full and it was hard to keep up with everything.  In general, all the entrée selections were nice and there were some interesting combinations that I would have never put together on my own which worked well together.

Course 7 was a blue cheese selection with lots of fancy sauces, and course 8 was a sampling of several peach concoctions.

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Finally the last two courses were dessert:

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The presentation of all of the food was beautiful and the experience was wonderful. At first we were worried we had to finish everything otherwise we would be hungry with such small portions, but you really do get full eating only a tiny bit of food each time.  It is fascinating what culinary experts can imagine and create. It was a wonderfully unique way to dine and if you’ve got some time in the Johannesburg area, go check it out!

Love from South Africa! xoxoxo

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Soweto Bike Tour

One of my good friends here, Annie, chose to celebrate turning 27 by getting a group together to spend 4 hours touring Soweto on a bicycle.  Soweto, short for South Western Townships, is the largest township in South Africa. It is located just on the outskirts of Johannesburg and just over an hours drive from Pretoria.

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Official townships and informal settlements formed during the apartheid era when black people living in designated “white only” areas were required to move into segregated townships.  Official townships are mostly composed of government housing built specifically for the purpose of providing affordable accommodation for  black workers during apartheid.

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Informal settlements, or shanty towns, often spring up beside the townships.  Dwellings in shanty town sections look like they could be made up of almost anything, but are usually constructed out of  a combination of wood, metal, and cardboard boxes.

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When Willa and Elizabeth came to visit we drove to Soweto but avoided going into any of the shanty town sections because, without an official guide, safety was a concern.  The Soweto bike tour was fantastic because it allowed you the opportunity to experience the community first hand. We were able to learn about the history of the township and how people live on a daily basis through people who have resided in Soweto their entire lives.

Soweto Bicycle Tours operates out of Lebos Soweto Backpackers, a hostel located in Soweto. You have the option to do a 2 hour, 4 hour, or all day bicycle tour. We arrived at Lebos, paid the fee for the four-hour tour and picked out a bike.  I really could not pinpoint the last time I actually rode a bicycle prior to this event so it was a little nerve-wracking at first wondering if I could even do it, but the saying “just like riding a bike” holds true and I had no issues (with the exception of being pretty sore afterwards!).

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We biked to an overlook a short distance from Lebos and listened to a short history of the township.  We introduced ourselves and then the guide explained some of the things we might see or experience on the tour. She mentioned that kids would bombard us and would want to give high fives or “catch a ride” and climb onto our bikes, which she warned us not to allow. She also taught us how to say “sawubona,” which means “hello” in Zulu, one of the official South African languages, often spoken in Soweto. 10171042_10103527316780828_3938480386901410634_n 10247279_10103527320812748_3398918334827953698_n

Two boys pretended to shoot at us and said “Give me your money” which was a little unnerving but the majority of the kids were really sweet and just wanted high fives.

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We biked into the shanty town section first and headed to a local shebeen to taste home-brewed maize and sorghum beer (yes, this was the first stop on a four hour bicycle tour). Traditionally, shebeens (although many are now legal) were brew houses where alcohol was sold with a license or permit.  We learned that traditionally women brewed the beer for the shebeen and she was known as the Shebeen Queen.  We got to act out the ritual of the Shebeen Queen presenting her home-brew to her husband for approval. If the husband approves of the beer then everyone gets to taste it. The birthday girl got to be the queen for the day and had to present “her” beer to one of her husbands (Brant got to be one of the husbands). It was interesting because we all had to taste it out of the same wooden bowl.  This was a large group of Americans and we were all hesitant about the cleanliness of the situation, but in the end I felt like I had to try it. We went for the experience and now I can safely say that I tried it and fortunately sharing a cup with a large group of people didn’t cause me to get sick afterwards.  The beer was made with maize and sorghum so it had a very different flavor than the types of beers I prefer.

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Next we biked over to a restaurant where they had us try cow cheek with pap (a local corn meal dish that has a consistency somewhere in between grits and mashed potatoes). We were given more (non shebeen) beer to wash it down and again had to share with each other. Surprisingly, I thought the cow cheek was decent. It was really salty and didn’t taste bad at all.

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After that, we biked past government apartments that were built in the shanty town but have remained unoccupied for 5 years. These were fully furnished accommodations but the rents were too high for people and nobody can afford to rent them. Rather than lower the rents, the government has been letting them sit empty.  We were all surprised that the buildings have been empty for so long and had not been extremely vandalized you would see a broken window here or there but she explained that the residents were feeling very frustrated having to look at these empty homes with no hope of ever residing there. She hoped after the election the government would try to work something out so people could move have better places to live.

We biked past a school and learned about how despite knowing how important education is, the teen pregnancy rate is so high that the graduation rate is embarrassingly low. In South Africa parents must pay tuition to send their children to school. The public schools are subsidized by the government, but there is still a portion that must be paid by the parent in order for the child to attend. All schools also require a uniform that must be supplied by the parent. In extreme cases, the government will supply one uniform for the child. Even the subsidized fees can present a real challenge to parents trying to educate their children with the unemployment rate so staggering. It is another reason the graduation rate is so low.  One of the interesting things we learned here was that the 2011 census estimated the population just shy of 1.3 million people.  Our tour guide told us that more accurate population estimate is around 3 million people. A 2 million people population discrepancy is a strange thought.

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Then we headed over to the Hector Pieterson museum (the museum we visited when Willa and Elizabeth were in town). The bike tour does not take you inside, but the guide summarizes the history of the Soweto uprising and the events surrounding Pieterson being shot and killed.

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For the last stop, we biked over towards Sowetos version of Beverly Hills, where you can view the homes of Nobel prize winners Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu on the same street. The bike tour does not take you inside the Mandela house, but it is open for tours. You can see the outside of Desmond Tutus house, which is never open for tours as a family member resides in the house.  The area is very vibrant with many restaurants and street performers.

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Finally, we headed back to Lebos and they served us bunny chow. My camera died at this point but I found a picture online of what we ate:

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The bike tour was without a doubt one of my favorite experiences so far. The tour went above and beyond to showcase food, famous people and attractions, school situations, government issues the community still deals with, and how apartheid still affects them.  The tour took you through the town riding in traffic and people, which some novice riders may find a little intimidating, but I felt added to the experience.

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Love from South Africa! xoxoxo

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Posted in Expat- General, Tourism, What to do in Joburg | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Mandela Capture Point

We took a detour on our route from Durban to Pretoria in order to visit the Mandela Capture Point Monument Sculpture.  The monument was erected where Nelson Mandela was arrested after being on the run for 17 months. He was subsequently sentenced to prison for 27 years.

The monument is located in the city of Howick, and the site has a museum and small restaurant.

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To reach the sculpture you walk down a long pathway. The pathway towards the monument is supposed to represent the 27 years Mandela spent in prison and his “long walk to freedom.”

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When you arrive at the end of the pathway there is a marker that shows where you are supposed to stand in order for the sculpture to depict the face of Nelson Mandela.  IMG_1969[1] IMG_1973[1]

But as you can see from the picture below, when you move away the face disappears.

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Below is a (shaky) video of what it looks like to walk through the sculpture to hopefully give you a better sense of what it was like visiting the monument.

We highly recommend stopping by for a visit if you are in the area!

Love from South Africa! xoxoxoxo

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Durban and the Oyster Box Hotel

Durban is a popular beach destination in South Africa and located 620 kilometers (385 miles) southwest of Pretoria. In February, we decided to visit the area and made reservations at the Oyster Box Hotel.

Road trips in this country can be very interesting. We were barely out of Pretoria when the kids called for their first restroom break and we spotted this sign painted on the side of the gas station wall:

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We enjoy finding funny things and appreciating the beautiful things while driving. It is part of what makes exploring fun and exciting.

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We reserved a family room at Oyster Box Hotel for 3 nights and were able to bring along our 3 month old puppy, Ollie.  Our room had a separate room with bunk beds for the kids adjoining the main room.  Hayden had a blast playing in the ocean. Natalie liked it the first day, but was a little intimidated the second day. Ollie kept a pretty firm stance when he decided he did not want anything to do with the ocean.  We ordered room service to the room every night and sat outside to eat while the kids nibbled and played. It was a very relaxing trip.

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One of the highlights for the kids was when a monkey decided to join the table directly beside of ours during breakfast one morning. The staff sprayed water at the monkey and he left quickly.

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One day it rained, so we ventured down to the aquarium.  We did not realize that the majority of the aquarium activities were outside. It was more like a water park that had an aquarium attached. We made the best of it and saw the fish and a dolphin show. Afterwards we had lunch at a local place on the boardwalk and saw some amazing sand sculptures.

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We enjoyed our trip to Durban very much. Brant said the hotel had the best bunny chow he has tried to date. The Indian Ocean was loud, beautiful, warm, and relaxing. We were sad to leave but hope to visit again.  

In other news…..

The kids and I just returned from a visit to America in April/May. It was so wonderful to see everyone! I was told over and over that I needed to blog more. I know I’ve promised in the past to do better and then I don’t.  What holds me back is reading. I find myself using my spare time to read books rather than write anything. My new goal is to make myself write a blog before I can start a new book.  🙂 Let’s hope it works!

Hayden lost his first tooth over the weekend! He was so very excited to put his tooth under his pillow and that the tooth fairy came to visit!

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Love from South Africa! xoxoxo!

 

 

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An “I’m having an Africa day” Quiz

My friends and I were talking the other day how we all have “Africa days” where it just kind of stinks being here. I feel fortunate that I mostly have great days and really enjoy living abroad, however, it is easy to fall victim and get annoyed. You never now what will set you off…. for me today, it was a trip to Macro (kind of like Wal-Mart but 100 times worse) followed by our owners sending a letter basically saying that even though they didn’t want to pay to install a pool heater for us, they feel they have the right to claim ownership of the one we paid to have installed ourselves.  Absolutely ridiculous.

To honor my Africa day, I decided I want to write a blog post that I’ve been thinking about writing for a while. It stems from me driving around and occasionally having no idea what the road sign I am looking at is trying to tell me.

Who doesn’t like pretending to be in drivers ed again? If you find some free time, grab a piece of paper and see if you can figure out what these signs are trying to tell you. Comment below with how you did and which ones were difficult. I didn’t want to hurt any feelings, so I put some easy ones in here too. Remember, cheating is for losers. 😉

1) sign 1

 

2) sign 2

3) sign 3

 

4) sign 4

5) sign 5

6) sign 6

7) sign 7

8) sign 8

9) sign 9

10) sign 10

11) sign 11

12) sign 12

13) sign 13

14) sign 14

15) sign 15

16) sign 16

17) sign 17

18)sign 18

19) sign 19

20) sign 20

21) sign 21

22) sign 22

23) sign 23

 

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Answers below:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1) Mini Buses Only
2) Abnormal Vehicles Only
3) Vehicle containing hazardous materials
4) Speed Limit
5) Unauthorized vehicles prohibited
6) No Stopping
7) Hawkers Prohibited
8) 2 lane divided highway begins (also known as a carriageway)
9) 1 lane divided highway begins (also known as a carriage way)
10) priority crossroad sign
11) Traffic Circle Sign
12) Concealed Driveway Sign
13) Wild Animals
14) Gate
15) Gravel Road Begins
16) Narrow Bridge
17) Uneven roadway
18) Speed bump
19) General Warning (usually associated with potholes or goats)
20) Hippos
21) Cul-de-sac
22) Toll Plaza Ahead
23) Warthog

Hope you did great!

Love from South Africa! xoxoxoxo

 

 

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Our First Visitors: Part 3- Panoramic Route, Christmas, and Soweto

On the way back from safari we decided to detour and drive along the highly touted Panoramic Route in Mpumalanga.  There are a lot of stops along the route, most notably, God’s Window (which on a clear day you can see all the way to Mozambique), and Bourke’s Luck Potholes, which were my personal favorite along this route.

We began our drive in Hoedspruit, Limpopo, and traveled the route towards Sabie in Mpualanga.

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We stopped off at the Bourke’s Luck Potholes first, which are natural whirlpool formations in the bedrock of the river. We were also greeted by wild monkeys upon arrival.

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After the potholes we drove to several sites, including Pinnacle Rock, and Berlin Falls. At each site there were curio shops where merchants were selling craft items. 1234 1232 1215 1236 1226 1225

We were travelling on a dreary day so when we got to God’s window, it was supposed to look like this: 2417729955_d4b15cb603_b_960_472_80auto_s_c1_center_center but when we saw it, it looked like this: 1229 1228. So that was a little disappointing.

We spent the night in the town of Sabie and returned to Pretoria the following day.

Christmas was great, and it was wonderful having family in town with us!

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The last touristy thing we did was head to Soweto, which is a township area by Johannesburg.  We toured the Hector Pieterson Museum, located close to where he was shot and killed, is a memorial to him and displays the struggle students experienced during apartheid.  We tried to go inside the Mandela house, but the line was incredibly long and we ran out of time. We had lunch near the house and could see the Soweto water towers where people bungee jump.

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After Soweto, we headed to Sandton for some Thai food in Mandela Square. We had so much fun with Willa and Elizabeth. Hope their trip inspires some additional guests! 🙂

Love from South Africa! xoxoxo

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