Day 112-113: Saturday and Sunday, 21-22 November 2009

My new itinerary to the end of the South African leg…. Namibian and Botswana legs to follow shortly.

To watch Buddy and Me in real time click here, select South Africa under “Global Fleet Logins:” in the left hand panel, enter cellphone number 0822549129 and password Buddy.

To make a donation to or information on any of the organisations involved in assisting victims of child rape and abuse, please click on one of the following links:

Bobbi Bear Foundation (KwaZulu-Natal)
The Teddy Bear Clinic (Gauteng)
The TygerBear Foundation (Western Cape)
GRIP (Mpumalanga)
StepThru (Gauteng)

Well it rained all Friday night and when I woke on Saturday morning it was still raining. I had quite a bit of washing to do and was hoping that the rain would relent for a few hours so I could get it done, but the weather was not playing the game and so no washing was done on Saturday.

After breakfast which consisted of beef sausages and boiled eggs, I headed into Lichtenburg where I eventually got the Beares staff to pose for a photo. I have actually decided to award them the prize for the longest time taken to get a photograph of any Beares staff on the project to date.

<i>Lichtenburg <b>Beares</b> staff. I’m sure you can fathom out which one is Dirk – the manager – and Carol Ann is the dizzy blond next to me</i>
Lichtenburg Beares staff. I’m sure you can fathom out which one is Dirk – the manager – and Carol Ann is the dizzy blond next to me

While chatting to the Beares staff, an ex-Regional Manager of Beares arrived, Dave Kearney, who is an Irishman who only speaks Afrikaans?? On hearing that I am a history fanatic – I can’t pass a vintage cemetery without going in and checking out the ancient details inscribed on the gravestones – he decided that I cannot leave Lichtenburg without undertaking a history tour and so took me to see General De La Rey’s house, grave site and monument in the town.

<i>The General's house where he lived, about 5 kilometres outside of Lichtenburg on the Mafikeng road</i>
The General's house where he lived, about 5 kilometres outside of Lichtenburg on the Mafikeng road
<i>The plaque mounted outside the front door. The front of the house is still exactly as it was at the time of the General's death in 1914</i>
The plaque mounted outside the front door. The front of the house is still exactly as it was at the time of the General's death in 1914

 

<i>The General's grave site. He died when he was shot in a police road block on the 15th September 1914 – he was born on the 22 October 1847</i>
The General's grave site. He died when he was shot in a police road block on the 15th September 1914 – he was born on the 22 October 1847
<i>The monument that was erected in the town's centre in memory of General De la Rey</i>
The monument that was erected in the town's centre in memory of General De la Rey

Back at the Beares store, Carol Ann told me about a pub called Rafters, which is very close to the caravan park where I was staying, in fact it is almost next door, and told me that when she had phoned her friend Jackie Hechter who is the co-owner of the establishment together with her husband Mark, Jackie had told Carol Ann to make sure I visited them. So based on the fact that the Bokke were playing Italy at 4pm that afternoon I decided that I would force myself and go over and indulge in a few frosties while supporting the Boks, I mean come on, surely the Bokke can beat Italy and I was sure they would do better with my support.

When I arrived at Rafters I discovered that Jackie had made arrangements for a photographer, Herman, to pop in and for a local Lichtenburg top model, Nadia Labuschagne, to make a visit to the pub and have some photo’s taken for the local newspaper.

<i>Nadia trying out Buddy’s comfortable seats and exquisite interiors</i>
Nadia trying out Buddy’s comfortable seats and exquisite interiors

 

<i>An article on Nadia which appeared in the <b>Rapport</b> about the entrants for the top model competition for 2010 and she is still in the running. She also featured as one of the top 20 <b>FHM</b> girls for 2009 and was <b>Miss Lichtenburg</b> in 2007. If it wasn’t for all the mud Buddy was covered in from the gravel roads and rain in the area, you would have seen how Buddy was glowing to have such a beauty sitting in the driver's seat for a change</i>
An article on Nadia which appeared in the Rapport about the entrants for the top model competition for 2010 and she is still in the running. She also featured as one of the top 20 FHM girls for 2009 and was Miss Lichtenburg in 2007. If it wasn’t for all the mud Buddy was covered in from the gravel roads and rain in the area, you would have seen how Buddy was glowing to have such a beauty sitting in the driver's seat for a change
<i>The inside of <b>Rafters</b>. If you look carefully on the wall on the right side, there is a section of the wall which has been painted in the form of bricks. Special people are allowed to buy a brick and inscribe their details/message on a brick. Jackie fortunately considered me to be a “special person” and not only allowed me to write on a brick but actually donated a brick to <b>‘Buddy and Me’</b></i>
The inside of Rafters. If you look carefully on the wall on the right side, there is a section of the wall which has been painted in the form of bricks. Special people are allowed to buy a brick and inscribe their details/message on a brick. Jackie fortunately considered me to be a “special person” and not only allowed me to write on a brick but actually donated a brick to ‘Buddy and Me’

 

<i>Jackie and me indicating the <b>‘Buddy and Me’</b> brick</i>
Jackie and me indicating the ‘Buddy and Me’ brick
<i>The <b>‘Buddy and Me’</b> brick</i>
The ‘Buddy and Me’ brick

It was a really great afternoon, particularly because the Bokke actually won this game and at 6:30pm, after the game ended I headed back to my caravan and after cooking a short rib curry, I bet you would never have guessed that, I climbed into bed with my Wilbur Smith book, Monsoon which I am reading for the third time. I have often been asked, “If an arrangement could be made for you to meet any person in the world, who would you most dearly like to meet” and my answer has and always will be, “Bishop Desmond Tutu, who I believe is the most astute holy man, politician and individual I have ever heard talk, and of course, that amazing man, Mister Wilbur Smith. So if anyone reading this blog has any ‘pull’ with either or both of these two men, I would sincerely like to meet them one day.

Sunday morning dawned and it was a beautiful, sunny and hot morning, and so by 6am I had finished my washing and hung it up to dry. I was hoping to leave and head out for Schweizer Reneke by 2pm and so hoped that the bright sunshine would have my washing dry by then. It was in fact dry by 11am and so at 12pm I was driving out of the caravan park destined for Schweizer Reneke. I had hoped to be able to chat to Vicky and Garth, owners of the caravan park who had kindly helped me by sponsoring my caravan accommodation for the two nights – they had had a function in the park in a huge marquee on Saturday afternoon and night and so I did not get a chance to chat to them – and when the time came for me to leave, they had gone out on Garth’s motorbike on a Sunday afternoon joll. So to Vicky and Garth, I am terribly sorry I missed you but thank you for your kind hospitality and generosity.

<i>My caravan ‘home’ for Friday and Saturday night</i>
My caravan ‘home’ for Friday and Saturday night

The 179 kilometres to Schweizer Reneke took ‘Buddy and Me’ two and a half hours to drive. The entire drive was done through completely flat terrain. Not once, on the open road, did I have to change Buddy out of fourth gear and I could see far into the distance on all sides. The only time I had to change gears was when I entered and drove through the small towns of Biesiesvlei, Sannieshof, Delareyville, (where, I must be honest, I thought General De la Rey had lived and was buried), then on through Migdol and finally arriving in Schweizer Reneke.

<i>The main street of Schweizer Reneke. I’m sure that tomorrow morning, Monday, will prove to be much busier?</i>
The main street of Schweizer Reneke. I’m sure that tomorrow morning, Monday, will prove to be much busier?

There is unfortunately no Round Table, Table in Schweizer Reneke but Tabler Heindrich Schulze of Round Table in Rustenburg contacted a friend Sakkie Viljoen in Schweizer Reneke who, together with his father Gert, arranged and sponsored accommodation for me for the night at the Mamusa Guest House B&B and Restaurant, which believe me is a lovely place. So now I’m settled in and after completing my blog will indulge in a meal and then once again retire to bed with Wilbur Smith, or rather his book Monsoon.

<i>The front section of my room at the <b>Mamusa Guest House, B&B and Restaurant</b></i>
The front section of my room at the Mamusa Guest House, B&B and Restaurant

So until tomorrow when I visit the Beares store here in Schweizer Reneke and then head out for Kuruman and then on to Kathu in the afternoon where I will spend the evening, ‘Buddy and Me’ wish you well and hope you had a terrific weekend and for our sake, please pray that the rain has left us and that we have sunny skies ahead of us.

Before signing off, ‘Buddy and Me’ have another plea for anyone who has contacts with companies or wealthy individuals who can contribute towards Buddy’s depleted medical aid fund. To date we have not had a response from one single person and so desperately need to replenish the R10 000-00 (ten thousand Rand) that was spent fixing Buddy’s gear box, engine, new starter motor, new carburettor and front suspension which knocked our budget for a loop. So if you know anyone who can help, pleeease, any contribution will help.

Keep well, stay well and above all, keep all children safe.

Caring regards from
Buddy and Me (Steve Heath)
steve@buddyandme.co.za

To assist with Buddy’s medical aid (recouping the R9 960.00 spent on repairs to engine and installation of new gearbox, starter motor and front suspension), please make a deposit into the following account:

  Bank: First National
  Branch: Lambton
  Branch code: 251542
  Acc name: Buddy and Me
  Acc number: 622 327 236 78
  Ref: Buddy’s medical aid

All assistance, no matter how small, is greatly appreciated. Any excess collected above the necessary amount, will be donated to the three organisations involved in the project, namely The Teddy Bear Clinic, Bobbi Bear Foundation and The TygerBear Clinic.

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