South Africa
Trip Participants


Richard Van Breda
Lynn McLachlan
Mariam Isa
Andrew Luke
Simon Donnaly

 What a sight………First there was Richard squeezed into bright blue cycling shorts, a grass-green lycra shirt with pink polka dots and luminous lime-green monster socks. Then there was Andrew, whose head was clearly visible because he had taken special care just for occasion, to dye the ends of his hair blonde. He told me he was on the lookout for opportunities, visibility being good and all. The rest of us paled in to insignificance next to those two shining beacons. Among us was Simon, whom I offered to snog immediately on account of a long absence, but he quickly declined and so I had to content myself a close-up photo.


Mariam and Johan arrived looking fresh and keen. Marna and Jono didn't get out of bed despite having been the driving force behind the mission. We were all quite impressed with the cunning in which they had gotten ESSA members to the start of the race early on a Sunday morning with just a few false promises and emails.

Anyway, we got psyched up by putting on our helmets and then took off on the 40 km route. After riding around on game tracks in the veld for a while, we arrived back at the start and were congratulated heartily on finishing the 5km route. Chuffed to have achieved one of the races so quickly (not), we took off again to find the 40km route. Whilst getting lost in the thorn thickets of Hammanskraal rural, looking for markers, a gnu of the blue variety and 2 other gnus of the same variety got separated. The one gnu, gnu that he wanted to be with the two-gnu so he put his head down to show me his buffed helmet-spikes and spinnning eyeballs. Then he aimed at my ass, on the other side of which was the 2 gnu.


Simon I gnu it was gnu or never, so I stamped down on those pedals like a impi warrior to avoid gnu-horn-up-the-ass recipe. I closed my eyes too, so I never gnu what happened after that.

I was riding around some more in the bush, when I found, to my great surprise, Richard in front of me. Having left him behind me, I knew for certain that he had not overtaken me with the whole polka dot ensemble being so obvious. So I asked him how he had achieved this fine result. He said, and I quote, "Did you see those kief, concrete elephants?" I hadn't, and in my momentary confusion, he remounted and sped off. I spent the rest of the ride wondering how the kief, concrete elephants had gotten him to this advantageous position.

Still confused, I ended the race again. To celebrate we drank and spoeged bokdrol.  


Sunday, July 27, 2008 (All day)


Mountain biking