|Wednesday 10th October - South Africa - Central Drakensberg (Day 2)
Today was a really lovely day. The weather was much improved on the last couple of days - cloudy, but dry with some lovely sunny spells. We even got to see some of the mountains, although the tops were always shrouded in cloud.
There are lots of activities available in the Champagne Castle part of the Drakensberg handy when you have children who wouldnt be content with hours of hiking.
This morning we went to a falconry show just up the valley from Inkosana Lodge. At the start of the show we thought we were going to be part of an audience of about 10 people and then two busloads of school children turned up to swell our numbers. The show was very good lanner falcons, cape vultures, crested eagles and eagle owls swooping down to grab their lunch. A well-equipped family sat beside us with a wide range of toys to keep their little ones amused. Our girls sidled up to the other children and played with them.
After the show we drove up to the head of the valley to go on a little walk (about 5km) to Sterkspruit falls. We had a picnic at the falls and then walked back. Keziah walked all the way there and back and was very proud of herself. We showered her with praise and congratulations quick walk up Lochnagar on the first weekend back in Scotland, Keziah? Maybe not.
The Drakensberg Boys Choir is world famous, although the first time we heard of them was yesterday. When theyre not touring, they perform on Wednesday afternoons in a theatre at their school in the Champagne valley. Our hosts at Inkosana Lodge warmly recommended the choir, so we went along to hear them. It was a really wonderful way to spend a couple of hours. The 80 or so choirboys were aged about 10-16 and came from a mixture of races (a fact that would go unnoticed back home, but seems more significant here in South Africa). In the first half of the show the choir sang some classical pieces, some church music, some gospel, a medley of Abba songs and Queens Bohemian Rhapsody. The second half of the show was more African with some dancing, drums and traditional African songs. There was also a Night Sounds of the Lowveld where the choir imitated the sounds of an African night insects, animals, thunder storm. Naomi heard the first and last songs and slept for the bit in between, but the rest of us stayed awake to enjoy the whole show. It was worth going to the Drakensberg for the choir alone. If ever the Drakensberg Boys Choir tour anywhere in your vicinity, do go and hear them, we cant recommend them highly enough.
And so we finished a very pleasant day by returning to the wonderful Inkosana Lodge. Tomorrow we leave the Drakensberg but we feel that this beautiful part of South Africa warrants a much longer visit. Maybe some other time?