At the Purcari Winery in the village of Purcari, Moldova. Photo taken December 7, 2016.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Purcari Winery, Republic of Moldova.

Where are they going next? Transnistria. The country that doesn't exist! Arrive December 8th.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The town of Graaff Reinet

Our first priority yesterday morning was to get our internet working again. We have two SIM cards and we use one each for our internet access. Turns out that Ruth's expired on Thursday night, and mine expired on Friday night.

So we woke up on Saturday with no internet.

You can recharge these things on the South African Vodacom website, but I screwed up some kind of PIN number when I tried to do it and after three attempts is shuts you out. So now, we had to find a shop in town where we could buy an airtime voucher and then transfer the airtime to data so that we could use the internet.

The town of Graaff Reinet. 

So we went for a walk. Our little guest house is only about ten minutes from the center of town. Things are still pretty quiet at 9:00am, but all of the shops are in fact open. Not only did we need to get our SIM crads refilled, but I'm also looking for a pair of sunglasses. 

The Dutch Reform Church.


The Dutch Reform Church is definitely the main landmark in the center of Graff Reinet. What a great looking church. Said to be the only church in South Africa that has a kitchen and chimney.

We stopped in a couple of places, but were told that the best way to recharge them was to buy airtime vouchers at the Spar grocery store. So that's what we did. We bought enough to get one working and online, then used that one to get the other one working and recharged the second one from the website. The things we do for internet!

It's a hot weekend, with highs around 33C (92F). So we decided to relax for the afternoon. We have a nice little patio and we decided to do a braii (bbq) for supper. We had bought a couple of rib eye steaks. No gas BBQ's here in South Africa...you bbq the old fashioned way with either wood or charcoal!

First, get the coals nice and hot!

Kevin, braiing the steaks.

Looking good!

And they were good!

Up early Sunday morning to go hiking before it gets too hot! Graaff Reinet is literally surrounded by the Camdeboo National Park, so were going to take advantage of that and do some hiking and exploring today.




18 comments:

  1. So glad you found a solution to getting back online...there would have been a lot of anxious people today otherwise. Impressive church...and steaks! (Btw, we'll be housesitting in mid-April, but perhaps we can still figure a way to see you on your trip from Ottawa to Saskatchewan. Wonder how our homeowners feel about couchsurfing?!)

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    1. Kevin will always find a way to get online, he goes nuts when he can't get on! It is different when we know that we are at a place then doesn't have internet, like when we do some of these multi day hikes in the middle of nowhere but when we are back in civilization then it is a different story.

      Where will you be housesitting at the end of April?

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  2. We do some wondrous things to get the internet and are lucky that we can do it.
    Those steaks look wonderful!

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    1. The steaks were very tasty, Kevin did a good job braaing them over the charcoal but we sure do miss our Weber.

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  3. Even though we live in Canada, we do not BBQ. We still braai **note the spelling ;-)** ! Have you had any boerewors? It is a South African sausage and is delicious, especially with Mrs Ball's Chutney. You have to try that before you leave.

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    1. Kevin has made that mistake before with the spelling of braai and I corrected him but even I missed it this time when I proofread the post.

      Yes, we have had boerewors while we have been here but we haven't had them often because I won't buy them unless I see the list of ingredients and many of the sausages packed by the store don't include the ingredients. We can't have wheat and many sausages put bread crumbs or wheat in some form as a filler in them, generally if you get them straight from a butcher they don't put fillers in them.

      We haven't tried Mrs. Ball's chutney but I read a story about the chutney and the original recipe for this chutney came from Nova Scotia, Canada. :-)

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  4. I commiserating with the hoops one has to jump through on the Internet. For now, all I have to say about processes is I'm glad you're back.
    Those steaks look scrumptious - and huge. You should have some left for sandwiches and / or snacking if you have a cooler. The church is most certainly a gorgeous building; have you had an opportunity to take any indoor shots?
    Right now I need to return to my Internet quest of the day. Problem for me is that I get waylaid and come to a point where I often can't remember what my original purpose was! I guess I'll have to keep notes on one of my note-taking applications; which one?!!!!!!
    Continue to suffer through your dispicable tour of South Africa. I had a wonderful time with Doug and Nancy last week - even though I was in the throws of the dreaded flu - still am. Yuck.

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    1. Internet can sometimes be a challenge when you are traveling.

      The steaks were delicious and believe it or not we didn't have any leftovers.

      When we walked by the church it was closed. The churches here don't seem to have an open door policy like we see in Mexico, which is quite a shame as it would have been nice to have been able to see the inside.

      Hope you are feeling better and so glad that you got to meet up with Doug and Nancy.

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    2. No open door policy on the churches in South Africa because everything would get stolen. If there is no-one in attendance, they have to lock it up.

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    3. It's a shame that they don't have the churches open for a least a few hours each day when the public can visit and maybe they did but we didn't see any sign stating this. The church was certainly impressive from the outside.

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  5. I guess your search for sunglasses failed? Thank goodness for nice steaks to make up for it! :c)

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    1. Kevin did find a pair that he like but they were to expensive for us, especially when he goes and sits on them or lets they fly off the edge of a cliff!

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  6. Very nice steaks. Good job! Yep, sounds like getting airtime in Mexico. Same routine. March is getting closer.

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    1. Actually it is easier to get air time for the internet in Mexico than it is here. We are looking forward to getting back to Mexico, although we will miss Africa.

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  7. Not having internet is a terrible thing. Glad you figured out how to recharge yours. We miss you when your posts don't pop up every day.

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    1. Thanks Jim and Sandie, and we miss not writing them each day.

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  8. If there have been Dutch in an area, there will always be a Dutch Reform chuch:)

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    1. And, they build very beautiful churches!

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