Out of the forest, and back to the beach….we made our way from magical Hogsback to the town of Chintsa- on the Wild Coast of South Africa.
Through long stretches of beautiful country roads, a decade worth of Pearl Jam played in the background. Things did seem a little more “wild” on this side of the country. The roads were much better than we were expecting (which was great), but the tribal-looking people carrying huge sacks on their heads, meandering cows and mammoth baboons stopping traffic, and colorful shack villages in the middle of nowhere felt rawly undeveloped. They don’t call it the wild coast for nothing.
We definitely felt a little less safe than before in this area. At one point, the main road had about a dozen burning tires in the middle of it and police with machine guns directing traffic and looking in the bush. At another town we stopped in for food, it felt like a ghost town. No one was on the street and as soon as we parked, 2 guys were circling our car. They looked like they were on serious drugs and would do anything g for some cash, so we put it in reverse!
We made it to Chintsa safely and found our accomodation for the next 2 nights: Bucaneers Backpackers
Ok! We generally opt for the cheapest room they have so this was quite a treat. And quite a view.
After taking us to our fancy room, they told us the afternoon activity was volleyball with free wine. Shane’s face lit up over the volleyball and I was all about the free wine 😉
I played 3 games with Shane as my partner and had so much fun. But then I decided to sit out so Shane could really play.
One of the reasons I chose Buccaneers to stay at was that it has associations with a number of volunteer organizations, including the Acacia nursery school up the road. I was SO excited to go hang out with 15 three to 5 year olds.
As soon as they saw at the door it was instant affection. They came running at as with big eyes and even bigger hugs. They spoke mostly Xhosa but also learned English in school, so they understood a bit of what I was saying. We communicated mostly through gestures, smiles, and giggles.
From the minute we got there, they had us running!!
We became human jungle gyms and hug machines.
I was running around and sweating so I had them do some exercise too! It. Was. Adorable. They didn’t take their eyes off me and did whatever I did.
This little peanut was one of my favorites with her sweet little face. I held her almost the whole time because when I went to put her down she wouldn’t let go. I looked over at one point and she was picking dandilions by herself and brought them over to me. Sweetness.
SO MUCH FUN!
Shane had just about all 15 kids on his shoulders and was jumping up and down in front of a window so thy could see themselves. They were cracking up and standing in line waiting for a turn.
Excuse my sweaty shirt…it was quite the workout.
When we finally left we were very filthy and very happy. I love kids.
On the long walk home down the dirt road
we saw a few cool animals including a stunning white horse and a bug we could only describe as being “African” looking.
The kids wore us out so we had lunch and chilled for a while in the beautiful Africa room.
This place is breathtaking.
Early to bed to be rested for our 7 hour drive the next day….any guesses where we are going next?!