Monday, 2 January 2012

An interesting day ...

Richard and Graeme wanted to go on a ride however because there has been so much rain they didn't want to chance going off-road so they decided they would do a highway ride to Pretoria to Fort Klapperkop and invited us along.  At first Wendy said she wasn't coming with but then changed her mind and drove through with Connor and I.  We followed the boys on the highway and when we reached Fort Klapperkop, which belongs to Groenkloof Nature Reserve, we found that it is closed on Mondays and Public Holidays and seeing as today is a Monday and a Public Holiday that was two strikes against us!!!  It is interesting that it would be closed on a Public Holiday as that is the time when many people go out looking for something to do.  On the way up to the fort I took these photos of our silly guys ...

 Welllll, we are in Pretoria and I have been wanting to visit the Voortrekker Monument, which we see each time we hike at Groenkloof, so I asked nicely if we could go there instead.  The last time I was there was about 39 years ago!!! and I am embarassed to say that this is the first time Connor was visiting the monument.

We first visited The Trek Monument and Fort Schanskop ~ These forts were built by the Boers to protect Pretoria against the English.


Fort Schanskop
 The troops were all hungry so we followed the signs which said "Monument Restaurant" and to our dismay there was no life there ... Oh dear!!!  So we drove up to the monument and fortunately there is a little restaurant there so hamburgers and toasted sarmies were the order of the day.  And now ... time to tackle the steps up to the Monument ~ Connor did a re-enactment of the scene from Rocky where he runs up the stairs and then jumps in triumph (sorry Connor, there were many more steps in Rocky!!! LOL!!!). 

I took this photo of the Monument through my favourite flowers.
I vaguely remember the first time we visited the monument with our Primary School Principal, Mr. Erasmus, who was also my Mom's boyfriend at the time, and we climbed the stairs to the top ... I wanted to see what it was like to do that now as an adult.  As I walked up I concentrated on counting the stairs and thought of Ms. Bitchcakes and her runs up the Empire State Building which is much more challenging!!!  Well there are 120 steps to the first landing which leads outside and you can look out over Pretoria East ,,,

then another 47 steps to the very top just under the dome.  I am terrified of heights but I took this photo from the top and then bought a postcard with a better picture ... 

I walked the 167 steps down plus an extra 38 to the museum in the basement where I found Wendy and Graeme.  Another 38 steps up to the ground floor where my hunny was sitting and playing cards on his phone.  We rested for a while and then decided it was time to come home ~ My legs were shaking and I had to firstly tackle the steps back to the car park and then drive home!!! 

We drove through Voortrekker Hoogte, which is an army town and was VERY quiet, and then onto the highway and back home. 

What an unexpectedly lovely day AND I did something I was wanting to do for a very long time.

We had lovely savoury mince pancakes and apple sponge & custard for dinner and I am going to watch The Mentalist with my hunny and get myself ready for the first working day of 2012 ... Consistency is going to pay off this year!!!

I hope you all enjoyed your day today and especially those of us who had the pleasure of a public holiday in South Africa.

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