Monday, 24 October 2011

SA/Namibia 2011 - Day 23. Bethal to Vanderbijl Park and Randburg.

View 23rd Sept: Bethal to Vanderbijl Park in a larger map

Sorry there are no pictures today. We set out from Bethal in very cool and foggy conditions. Even if I could have made my cold hands work the camera, there was nothing to photograph.

We routed via Nigel where we pulled in for fuel and breakfast, then Heidelburg, Vereeniging and Vanderbijl Park.

Mike was staying in Vanderbijl Park with his sister for a few nights. I was going on to Randburg to stay with my cousin.

View 23rd Sept: Vanderbijl Park to Randburg in a larger map

After Nigel and some welcome breakfast, the sun burnt its way through the fog and the day turned into beautiful Highveld weather - sunny, cloudless and warm.

After a cup of tea and a koeksuster at Mike's sister's I headed off for Randburg. It was quite strange riding 'solo' after having had company for so long on this South Africa/Namibia ride. It didn't take long to join the N1 and after paying the toll at Grasmere Plaza I was cruising the last part of my journey. I couldn't help smiling as I passed familiar names and places as the Tenere buzzed north. Glimpses of the Johannesburg skyline offered itself on my right-hand side and it was like I was actually coming home.

This was the place of my formative years, my upbringing and education. True, I had left South Africa in 1966, but I still consider this city as my spiritual home. The grin inside my helmet was tinged with sadness because my brother Robby, a true Jo'burger, had passed on a few years before and he was always very dear to me. I would, however, be catching up with his wife and family in the next four or five days.

I pulled into my cousin's place at about 13h15 to be greeted warmly and immediately offered a cold beer.

Distance Today: 287 km. 178 miles.
Trip Distance: 6 740 km. 4 188 miles.

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