The Cutting Room Floor

The Cutting Room Floor contains snippets of information and left over experiences that didn’t make the blog posts. Its primary purpose is to act as reminders to Claire and me of our trip as its memory inevitably fades. However you’re more than welcome to poke through them. Although they generally follow a chronological order, most of them lack context and you’ll have to ask us about anything that interests you.

  • Equivalent of six Hundred million dollars spent on the Cape Town stadium World Cup where 8 games were played. Since then a grand total of 40 events have taken place there. Halifax stadium?
  • Wind in Cape Town in general and Camps Bay and Cape of Good Hope specifically.
  • Kevin, the” coloured” cab driver with a great attitude, who got moved out of District 6 when 10 years old and had been in the resistance in high school.
  • The stop in Matjiesfontein, the strangest little town ever. Where we walked its 400 yard length again and again to get some exercise while other train travellers took the “village tour” on the double decker bus. The two museums; one a car and train car the other….. everything.

    All Shook Up!

    All Shook Up!

  • The buskers doing Elvis Presley material.

  • Meeting a solo traveller on Rovos Rail. Lives in Bradenton, about 5 miles from our place.
    Pretty in Pink

    Pretty in Pink

  • Watching the thousands of pink flamingos from the train on the way out of Kimberly.
  • Seeing our first zebra while out for a walk in Pretoria. All this way to go on sararis and this almost downtown.
    Good in stripes

    Good in stripes

  • Danny our Chinese guide in Pretoria and his stories of interviewing Winnie Mandela several time for the Swiss, owning several properties, his “major” pension, his father having all his gold stolen by his servants while escaping from China, his 8 bedroom mansion in PE which was lost in currency downturn.
    They eat this

    They eat this?

  • Trying to convince Fakier we could set him up with the dulse franchise for SouthAfrica. Him almost going for it. May yet.
  • The agonizingly slow meal service at Baker and the 45 minute wait to get a continental breakfast on flight day. The dinner meeting in that restaurant where the guests had to carry their chairs from the dining room upstairs to the meeting room and back again after the meeting.
  • Viewing Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu’s modest homes in Soweto.
  • Two girls travelling together. Canadians, so couldn’t possibly be Democrats. From Toronto and one of them in the entertainment business with an office at the corner of Danforth and Greenwood; almost literally around the corner from the tribe. What are the chances?
    Look closely

    Look closely

  • The leopard sitting 30 feet up in the tree with a (pretty much) whole impala balanced there. Lunch for the week.
  • Watching from only a few feet away waiting for the the leopard, eyeing the impala herd, to spring making one of them dinner, when a family of elephants come crashing out of the forest just behind him, spoiling the moment.
    Slow down!

    Slow down!

  • Canoeing down the river at Emily Moon late in the afternoon before a sundowner overlooking the same river.

  • The expression “The waiter will attend to you just now.” which really means you’ll get served sometime, honest.
    No pushing.

    No pushing.

  • The swimming hole at the very edge of Victoria Falls

  • Having a shower in the outdoor shower in the afternoon Zambian sun.
  • The Italian “minkey” (sic) trying to get our lunch. Must have been Italian; the only thing he ever wanted was pizza.
  • Meeting the Headman of one of five tribes in Simonga village and watching him basket weaving. Trying to reconcile that image with a tribal leader.
  • The first reaction to getting the bill at check out from Toka Leya. View it yourself by double clicking the link. Toka Leya Bill
  • Learning Sonny’s real name was Sanford; learning that in Zambia at least, like the Chinese the order of the surname and given name is opposite to ours.


  • Taking my first bite of a rusk on a morning game drive. Still keeping all my teeth.
  • Doing Yoga in a covered outside yoga area in the rain. Instructor BJ who also ran the gifts shops.
  • Briefly meeting the woman from FT Myers, Florida in one of the camps where within 3 minutes learned how much she hates snowbirds even though she was one once and how she expected more of the servers at the camp. Greatly relieved she was in someone else’s group.
  • Meeting Manuel & Liza for the first time. (Completing the North American contingent.) They had just gotten married and were on their honeymoon. Had been there one night and their only complaint they had was how worn out their bed was and the hotel replaced it the next day. Even I didn’t have the poor taste to connect any dots.
  • Manuel’s humour. o On one game drive he & Liza were in the front row of the vehicle when Gavin & Life went into the bush doing some tracking. After a while we joked that we should start the vehicle up and drive it over the hill to get their reaction when they returned. Trying to egg Manuel into doing it, when he responds “Oh yeah, stolen car, let them blame the Mexican.”

o When we were inviting each other to visit back home, and the girls said to come to Atlanta anytime he quips “Why, you need your lawns mowed?” (OK, had to be there. But we were. )

  • Gavin sense of humour too. After Claire and I had been splitting a beer at the sundowners, he was helping to arrange our takeaway lunch and wondered if we each wanted half a beer to go with that.
  • Reading newspaper article re an elephant upending a car in Kruger. Glad we saw it after being there, not before. Read it yourself here. You know the drill.
    I Like Your Trunk
  • Patti reading the news about the David Petraeus “affair” and wondering if there was any remote possibility that her learner had any connection of any kind. Understatement!
  • Amazed (and embarrassed) about the command of several languages most Africans had. Our humble driver from Londolozi to the airport apologizing for his perfectly fine English as he explains he only speaks four languages.
  • Big news while we were in PE that 120 homes were destroyed by fire in St Francis.



  • Standing on the world cup soccer field in PE
  • Pizza @ Cornuti, View & dinner at Lemon Grass, lunch at Bromont Vineyard, sundowners at The Lookout Deck.
  • Vincent, the great character in the clothing store. Gay, Jewish with a wicked sense humour. Later when he drove by us down main street, pulling over and offering us a lift. Fun guy.
  • Spotting the seals at Robberg, the whales at Gbos.
  • Actually paying to go into a bird exhibit after 9 days on Safari. Actually enjoying it.
  • Stupid morning nature walk at Gbos.

    Landscapers R Us

    Landscapers R Us

  • Planting Beckett’s tree. (Read the certificate here.)

Beckett’s Tree

  • Chatting with the young couple from Stellenbosch. Their acknowledgement of the disparity gap and explanation that it became invisible to them over time.
    But it's only 10 AM

    But it’s only 10 AM

  • Wine tour from John Young, the charming and interesting owner of La Petite Ferme.
  • How affordable quality wine was. We’re not in Nova Scotia! (Read a page from the flyer. 1 R(and) is worth about 11 cents)
    Wine Store Flyer

  • Motorcycles racing through the four mountain passes every Sunday.
    Good Morning 1

    Good Morning 1

  • Having a healthy breakfast every morning, usually outside on a deck.
But its dark out!

But its dark out!

  • Needing a healthy breakfast every morning.
  • New favourite foods: malvah pudding, piri piri sauce, boboti. Had em all at Kalfi’s. (Alsotried famous KingKlip & Crayfish. Just OK)
  • No street signs in Stellenbosch.
    Waiting for flight time.

    Waiting for flight time.

  • Sitting and reading in open air bar at Spier’s vineyard trying to kill time. Waiting to be chased away but nobody much cared.
  • The restaurant operator in Cape Town airport courteously pressing us for details about Canada.
  • Just going wherever Life takes us.


Welcome home!

Welcome home!

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