April 2011 – 1000km Across South Africa

Something unique and wonderful happened this year. The Easter long weekend was followed by a public-holiday-Wednesday and another long weekend. Easter weekend usually results in 85.7% of the Gauteng population heading towards the coast for a mini-break.

And I headed towards that little town I grew up in called Clarens. To get there I take the N3. And, unfortunately for me the N3 is the way to Durban.

N3
The N3 on 22 April 2011

So there were a lot of people on the highway and everyone was heading my way. This annoyed me, because I like to have my way and when other people interfere I get upset.

I got stuck in bad traffic.

De Hoek Plaza
The traffic just outside the De Hoek plaza

When you’re driving 20km/h you have time to notice things. For example, the family with the heavily loaded car in front of me and their hamster. Yes, there are people who take their hamster to the coast on holiday. This means that either they don’t have an aunty to fill a food bowl or the hamster likes surfing. Either way, this poor hamster was packed up against the rear-windscreen and probably more distressed than I was at not having my way.

Corsa
My average speed - for 40km

Then I did a little math. I was 40km away from the off-ramp I needed to take to get off the N3. Normally, that would take 15 or 20 minutes. But on 22 April 2011 it took me over an hour. It’s a good thing I had a sandwich and water with me, otherwise I may have died. Stopping at the One Stop was not an option.

Engen
Lots of hungry people taking a break

Eventually I was off the highway. I looked back at the source of my torture and saw miles and miles of cars not reaching their holiday destinations.  But it was okay, because I was in the Free State and there wasn’t much happening on the roads. I could drive without thinking about distressed hamsters and how many metres per hour I was driving.

Traffic
Shame, boor bastards. You'll get to your destination in, oh, I don't know, three years.

And in certain pockets of South Africa, there really is nothing of interest.

Frankfort
When I asked the GPS to show me places of interest near Frankfort it showed Frankfort Correctional as an option.

And sometimes the roads lead to nowhere.

Nowhere
Left, right or nowhere?

My trip back was fine. This was a good thing, because the following weekend meant I would be travelling to the bushveld.

There is no traffic in the bushveld.

Road of Donkey
If you look closely you can see how annoyed they are that I am driving past them.

But there are donkeys.

Donkey Kong
I asked this guy for directions. He ignored me, the ass.

And they obey the speed limit.

Donkey Speed
... But sometimes go in the wrong direction.

And have houses.

Lawn Mower
This donkey can be seen mowing his lawn.

And just watch the world go by.

Watching the World go by
"Not much to see in this direction... Even less in the other."

When I grow up, I would like to be a donkey.

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April 2011 – 1000km Across South Africa

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