Crossing through to South Africa was another experience in fast and efficient border crossings. And then a jaw dropping experience in fast hill riding on the perfect road that wound its way down from here…
To cap off a great day of riding, the place I chose to stay happened to have two German riders I had first met in Nairobi. It was great to see them again and since we were headed in the same direction, we decided to ride together for a day or so.
After Swaziland I thought I had readjusted to being in a well-developed country, but honestly, I hadn’t. Most places in South Africa could be dropped anywhere in North America and fit right in. I kept on doing double takes when I’d pass a sparkling shopping mall or row of big box stores. I had to change months of learned behaviour- following proper road rules, what is scarce and should be stocked up on, distance between fuel stops, etc, etc. I really didn’t realise how much my thinking had changed and the readjustment took a while. Even my English had to change since I was so used to speaking to people with broken English, at best, that I had started simplifying my speech to the point of dropping almost everything except verbs and nouns from my ‘sentences’.
Good thing the area I had arrived in had such stunning scenery and riding through that scenery allowed me to slowly get back up to speed.