CAPE TOWN: Horseback ride// SKYDIVE!!!

Saturday

This morning my housemates wanted to hike Lion’s Head. I had already done it, so decided to take the lazy route and met them at the bottom with water bottles! We drove in two cars to Old Biscuit Mill to have breakfast. My eggs benedict stall was open so I went there immediately! We walked around, and hung out, and waiting for our hosts to get back to drive the girls home. When they arrived, it was hard for me as I was saying goodbye to Vanessa for good. The next morning she would be flying to Madagascar for the last leg of her trip.

 Horseback Riding on the Beach

I had a few hours to relax before driving from where I stay in The Gardens over to Noordhoek to go horseback riding on the beach! It was a beautiful drive through the mountains. I could see hints of fall colours on the trees, and also all the areas on the mountain that had been burnt by the Cape Town Fires just over a month ago. I arrived at Sleepy Hollow Horse Riding, got sorted, and waited for the rest of my group. I rode with a family of four visiting from Tanzania. We started out along the road and made it to the beach. It was so beautiful and peaceful walking through the dunes, to the beach. There were mountains on either side of us and we were in a little bay. The sun was starting to set and it was absolutely stunning!

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We walked back through the dunes and in through the back entrance to the farm. We were in a grassy area letting the horses eat while our guides lead us to the ramp one by one to get down. I was facing away, still on my horse, and all I hear form behind me is a blood chilling scream of terror. It was the mother from the family I was riding with. She just kept screaming! The two sons and I were frozen, holding on to our reigns tight hoping our horses wouldn’t get spooked and run off. Turns out, horse #1 kicked at the mothers horse, so it jumped to get out of the way and threw the mother off. She landed half on the ramp before falling to the ground. Somehow, her husband jumped down off his horse to run and check on her, and stepped on her ankle. Her sons wanted to get down and go to their mom. Our guide had the two horse by the reigns, trying to secure them, she ended up hooking them together and going to get the son down. She started coming over to me but I said I could surely wait (she looked very busy). A few moments later, she came to me and I got down. I asked what I could do to help, and was holding two horses by the reigns while she went to do something else. When she was done, I gave her the horses and went over to see the mother. She was laying on the groups, she had really hurt her lower back, and her ankle, so they had called an ambulance.

A vehicle arrived from ‘Cape Medical Response’, which is a private medical company (so strange to me). They loaded her up, and I drove home.

Sunday

This morning I went to Hillsong Church with my housemates (for the last time!) and then went to Canal Walk to have lunch with my Connect Group to say goodbye! It feels like I just got here and I’m already saying goodbye, and doing things for the last time. So strange. I met up with my housemates and we went to have a picnic (dessert for me) at The Company’s Garden, a beautiful little park in the centre of Cape Town. Parking however, was impossible so we drove to Camps Bay Beach instead. It was nice to hang out with the girls, but already felt so different without Vanessa. I dropped Jozi and Tangi off and had my second round of goodbyes, I still have a week in Cape Town, but will not likely see them again. It was so hard! Next I dropped Antje off at her hostel and had my last goodbye. That was a heavy afternoon! I didn’t officially say goodbye to my Host family because I thought they were coming to our picnic this afternoon, but they weren’t able to.

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That night, I rented the movie, Wild, made popcorn, and stayed in!

Monday

This morning I woke up bright and early to go SKYDIVING! For some reason, I hadn’t really got to excited about this, even though it had been planned for about a month. Probably because its so dependent on the weather, and as I drove it was EXTREMEMLY foggy! I was set to go at 9:30am, and arrived at the location, and no one was there. I only have data on my phone (not airtime) so I emailed to see what was going on. At 10am when there was still no one there, I decided to drive back to a mall to buy some airtime. I got through to someone on the phone and was told my dive was suspended due to the weather, but was looking good for 1pm. I got some lunch and made my way back, still hesitant to get excited.

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It wasn’t until I was in my harness, watching the group ahead of me land that I started getting excited and nervous! On my jump was a girl named Ana from Sweden. I jumped attached to a guy named Jason. We walked out to the plane, and took off. We were just sitting on the ground of a small little plane. It had a garage type door that opened from bottom to top. It was a beautiful flight over farmlands and the ocean, with a beautiful view of Table Mountain and Cape Town in the distance. We were up for about 7 minutes then Jason hooked me to him and I put on my goggles and started FREAKING OUT! He opened the door and I had to put my feet out of the plane. I started SCREAMING! WE WERE SO HIGH UP!!!!! I couldn’t feel my legs, just thinking about it now I cant believe I did it. Jason pushed us out of the plane and it was a FREE FALL for a few seconds, actually SO SCARY! The little parachute opened and we were a bit more controlled so I could relax. We fell and fell then he pulled the big chute and there was a jolt before we were caught and started our leisurely decent to the ground. Then I could enjoy the ride! Except the harness was SO uncomfortable. He was able to loosen some straps but still. I was able to take the controls and spin us to the left or to the right which was so fun! We floated over the hanger and landed in the sand. Ana and her guide landed just a few seconds later and Jason and I got buried in their parachute! I was so glad to be back on the ground!

After getting home and wrapping my head around the fact that I just went skydiving, I drove out to Clifton Beach for my last chance to watch the sunset in Cape Town. The rest of this week I will be attending/ volunteering at Hillsong Colour Conference Cape Town and I couldn’t be more excited!

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Pamela

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