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There She Goes Again

Discovering myself, one trip at a time.

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Mon
19
Sep '11

Headed for Kleinplaas

On the road again…  We leave Storms River and shortly thereafter turn off the main road.  I’m wondering where in the world we’re going when I see signs for bungy jumping.  From the highest bridge in the world.   Well the highest bridge that you can bungy off of, probably not the highest  bridge in the entire world although it could be.  I’m not bungying, I’ve been there done that and don’t need to spend the money.  Lis, Marco and Christian, all go and love it, of course.

After the leap of faith we drive and drive and drive until we arrive in Oudtshoorn where we go to the Cango Caves.  I didn’t take my camera thinking “I’ve seen caves before.”  Mistake.  Glad Lis took hers.  This place is enormous!  I have to say though, it was nice just walking around and being in the moment instead of snap, snap, snapping away.  Not nice enough that I’m going to stop carrying a camera, of course.

One more stop before we settle in for the night, this one at an Ostrich Farm.  Ostrich’s eat lots and lots of rocks.  They’ve found just about everything in an ostrich’s stomach.  Wood, metal, lipstick tube, bottle caps, you name it they’ve probably found it.  Those birds are dumb.  And their design is defective.  Their digestive system is so bad they have to eat the rocks to process their food.  What the hell?  Who came up with that?

Ostrich kiss

Jim getting some lovin'.

Ostrich feet

How long until some crazy person makes shoes that look like this? Who's the guy who did the lobster shoes? Here's a new idea for him.

Ostrich whiz

I'm only sharing this with you because ostrich's have the weirdest butts EVER. They unfold, or something bizarre like that.

We learn that dark ostrich’s are male and the lighter ones are female.  Also, if you’re buying ostrich make sure you can stick your fingernail underneath the little ridges.  That’s where the feather was and there should be a break in the skin since they’d have pulled the feather out.  If not, it’s  not real ostrich.  It takes months for ostrich skin to go through all the processes before it can be used as material. And it’s the second most durable skin in the world.  First is the Kangaroo, third is crocodile.

Ostrich’s can live 60-70 years which makes what we heard next horrible.  Ostrich meat has to be processed before the ostrich is one year old.  Otherwise it gets too tough.  So no ostrich destined for a plate makes it past one year.

Standing on ostrich eggs

Ostrich eggs are incredibly durable. I'm standing on them and I'm not petite flower.

Oudtshoorn’s primary industry these days is ostrich farming.  They have a hell of a time with bird flu though.  Infected birds migrate down from Europe, leave infected poop and stupid ostrich’s eat it, get infected and have to be killed.  They just had to kill 50,000 of them and since they’re infected they can’t be used for anything, they’re all burned.  Bad European birds.

Other nifty ostrich facts:

  • They have 17 vertebrae in their  necks which means they can turn their head around 360 degrees.
  • They have no vocal cords so can’t really make any noise.  The males sometimes make a sound which comes from their stomach but that’s it.  Well aside from the snap their beak makes when they eat something.

Frances rode an ostrich, she was the only one under 75kg which is the weight limit.  You hold on to their wings.  Bizarre.  Lis and I got ostrich massages.  That means we held a bucket of food, backed up to a fence and a bunch of ostriches came around our heads from both sides to get at the food.  It’s hard to keep your eyes open when there are lots of ostriches reaching around you.  I’d rather have gotten a hug but what’re you going to do.

Ostrich massage

So that's how you get an ostrich massage.

Lis Ostrich Massage

Lis getting her ostrich massage. Look at the guy on the left. How can he swallow with that much food in his mouth?

Finally arrive at Kleinplaas, our home for the night.  It’s like a little apartment complex.  They certainly do have unique “hotels” here.  Ate at a great restaurant which I don’t remember the name of.  Need to google that next time I have internet access.  I had a starter of Camembert cheese which was big enough to be an entrée.  And there was a salad on the side.  Remembered once I took a bite that I don’t like Camembert.   Ate most of it anyway.  I need to  learn to use my utensils like everyone else in the world does.  They look so much classier than we do.  Although I think holding a fork upside down is just plan stupid.  Maybe I’ll start practicing.  Why is the US so behind the eight ball on that and the metric system?  Are we just trying to say “we’re the US, we don’t have to do what the rest of you do?”  We’re apparently the only country left in the WORLD who isn’t on the metric system.

1 Comment »

1 Comment » to “Headed for Kleinplaas”

  1. Susan Says:

    Nice ostrich massage.

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