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Gary Benham
Head of Communications, Pretoria

Day 14 - iSpy

Posted 24 June 2010 by Gary Benham  

The end of the group stage for England last night means that the High Commission's mobile team (Jo Bowyer and me) is on its way back to Pretoria.  this evening we've stopped in Colsberg having driven for about 6 hours from Port Elizabeth.

This is a distance of about 650Kms and if I'm honest there is not a huge amount to see or do on the very long, very straight roads.  As per British tradition Jo and I decided to play a little iSpy.  The "subjects" that we used give a great snap shot of South Africa.  So I spy with my little eye something beginning with ......


Anthills - ok more accuately termite mounds but they litter the countryside in varying sizes, some as big as small trees.#;
Air strips - we're in remote country grass strips are common.


Biltong stands - for those that have not visited South Africa biltong is a national delicacy.  To some its the local equivilent of parma ham, to others it is edible shoe leather.


Cactus - not unique to Mexico.
Can Can- Jo's very annoying ring tone!
Cattle - of varying types in huge open paddocks.


Dairy - saw a few of these, probably linked to the cattle thing above.


Elephant parks - big parks with elephants in them, enough said.


Farms - pretty much the only dwellings we saw for hundreds of miles.


Goats - along with sheep and cattle almost always present.
Golf Course - at least two!


Humps (speed) - in front of traffic lights in Port Elizabeth.  Surely the lights control speed?


Irrigation - without it there would not be as much "green".


Jaywalkers - we drove through nothingness for miles and miles and yet every few yards there was someone walking along the side of the road. Where they were going or where they had come from is a mystery.


Kniphofia Uvaria - the Red Hot Poker plants that line the roads here.


Lorra lorra lorries - road trains, suppling South Africa.


Monkeys - lining the roads;
Memorials - lonely and forgotten.


Nothingness - there was lots of it.


Ostriches - as common as cattle.


Petrol Stations - few and far between, we were on vapours at one point;
Picnic areas - frequent but basic.


Queues - at the roadworks, lengthy delays.


Road works - long stretches of one way traffic;
Road Kill - sadly too common, probably monkeys;
Road sweeper - my personal favourite.  Miles from anywhere a bloke, a broom and hundreds of miles of roads - why?
Rhinos - we didn't see any!


Secretary Birds - like in Lion King!


Trains - saw two, not common.


Urban areas - became less frequent and smaller the further we drove.


Vistas / views - stunning, simply stunning.


Wind Turbines - not enough given that we were near the "windy city";
Windmills - the prairie kind of American Mid West fame.


X - Roads - sorry nothing else.


Yellow lining - the courteous practice adopted by drivers to cross the (hard shoulder) yellow line to let faster vehicles pass.


Zebras - see Rhinos
Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz - very tiring.  Good night!

Gary Benham
24 June 2010

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A blog about the preparations for the football world cup in South Africa, and the role of the British High Commission in Pretoria.

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