The Wolkberg was the venue for this year’s Formal Dinner, and the setting for the dinner was absolutely spectacular. In a small valley, with a backdrop of the ‘Horns’, two cliff faces rising a few hundred meters from the base of the ‘Wonderwoud’, a small waterfall falling towards the Wonderwoud and hills and mountains surroundings, a precedent was set for a wonderful evening. With no lights from any of the surrounding areas visible, Scorpio blessing the start of the evening, and Mother Nature participating throughout by ensuring that the approaching thunderstorms were kept at bay, the Gods themselves seemed to be participating in the event.
22 explorers attended. The two new brave explorers who joined the trip were Jaco and Ilette who demonstrated their totally hardcore, staunch and impressive capabilities, by not only cycling from Haenitzberg to the Wolkberg, but also by cycling up the near vertical approach to the start of the hike, approximately 8 km of mountain rising over 800m of non-stop bends and twists.
As usual a very serious game of cricket was planned for Sunday morning and for all intent and purpose, the game was a great success and the valleys of the Wolkberg were filled with peals of laughter. There were a number of unruly hooligans on the pitch however, who not only undermined the very foundations upon which the civilised game of cricket is based, but who blatantly broke the rules in very ungentlemanly ways by surreptitiously moving the wickets, tackling the batsmen and by preventing the fieldsmen from fielding the ball. The Flemming boys gave a demonstration of speed bowling that Alan Donald and Dale Steyn would have been proud of, the only six of the game was scored by Paul Marais who whacked the ball out of the field of play, sending it rocketing a mere foot or two over the roof of Jono’s car, and the catch of the day was made by Mike Slater who casually took a one-handed catch all whilst eating an apple and taking photographs.
Notwithstanding one or two rather bizarre and outlandish outfits, Gavin, and a rather revealing brassier, Sharron, everybody was dressed to the nines, with the ladies looking absolutely gorgeous and guys totally dashing.
There was no question however that the highlight of the trip, notwithstanding the spectacular venue was the dinner itself. Following a rather chaotic photographic session with Paul bellowing at the multiple photographers, of which there were many, who all, it seemed, had missed the point, that in the age of digital photography, it is reasonably easy, to share pictures, was the starter, which was a very delicious vegetable soup. The main course was a ‘Moroccan’ masterpiece with rotties as a base, rice with lentils, a magnificent mince concoction made with all kinds of mysterious and exotic spices, a yogurt and cream topping, creamed ‘almond’ spinach on the side and a ‘finely’ chopped salad that had been liberally covered with a coriander dressing in addition. All in all, a culinary experience was had by all that that will not be forgotten for many years to come. To finish with, a pecan pie was served with exotic biscuits smothered in cream.
All in all a wonderful weekend, the only pity being, that we couldn’t stay that little bit longer...