Archives for posts with tag: good times

We did a lot of awesome things while we were in Cape Town, but a lot of it was just the regular chill type of stuff that you do when you go back home. I know when I go back to Tucson, I chill with all my BFF’s and eat at my favorite restaurants and drink at my favorite bars, specifically The Meet Rack. DELIGHTFUL.

We had many a braai with friends of Feller, people who love him and went out of their way to have us over to their homes. Good conversation, alcohol, excessive amounts of Savannah Cider (and Strongbow in the UK), fun people, nerding out, role playing, laughing, missing out on cultural references since since all my pop cultural comes from the US. Oh, there was many a time in South Africa AND the UK where I didn’t get a joke because it was unique to the location. And I kept joking that I had no idea Feller knew so many people who liked him so much; I mean, people FLEW IN from out of town to see him!, but he’s wonderful, so I’m not actually surprised. Plus I got to spend some time with a friend and her knitting group, which was a lovely way to spend an afternoon, and I bought some really lovely sock yarn that I can’t wait to work with

This trip really was FASCINATING because I’ve never spent so much time in foreign countries, and the fact that they were fairly close to what I’m used to seeing in the US made the differences that much more glaring. You know what the weirdest, most random difference was for me? All the toilet flusher handles are on the wrong side of the tank. Think about it! When you go to flush a toilet, you reach for the left side, but in both SA and the UK, the handles are on the right, if they’re not in the center of the tank. Either way, WEIRD.

Feller & I

Anyways, we spent a lot of time hanging out with some awesome people and Feller’s parents (who were also awesome). His mom took us to Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden, and it was beautiful.

Erica Fynbos III

Mum’s a tour guide there, so we got a wonderful (free!) tour of the gardens, with history and plant information. It was a beautiful day and so pleasant to spend that time getting to know Mum a little bit more.

Feller & I

We really hoped to go back again while we were there; they had an AMAZING sculpture exhibit that we wanted to see more of, but ALAS, life and vacation and SLEEP got in the way of our plans, and we never made it back.

Untamed

We also took the cable car to the top of Table Mountain and had dinner at Waterfront and drank excessively and watched TV with the Parents and went to Cederberg for a long weekend and some light hiking.

Hiking

Overall, this vacation was exactly what we were hoping for when we left. It was beautiful and relaxing and GLORIOUS. I’m TOTES looking forward to going back and spending more time with some awesome people.

(More pictures at Flickr, obviously. Click any of the pics to check the rest out.)

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You know, after the previous dive didn’t go so well, I was a LITTLE apprehensive about diving in a tank full of SHARKS, but as I already said, they wouldn’t let people do it if they died. That was my mantra leading up to the dive. They wouldn’t let people do it if they died. I even said that to the guy who took us on the dive; “I’m a little nervous, but I figure they wouldn’t let people do it if they died.”

Eagle Ray

And imagine that! We didn’t die! Despite being a NOT THAT LARGE tank of water with five sharks and untold numbers of other predatory fish. Who KNOWS what would have tried to eat us! But there are also eagle rays swimming around, PREGNANT ONES!, and turtles and fish that look like grumpy old men, and sharks teeth in the gravel we could seek & find and take home (we got THREE teeth, none of which I found).

Shark RIGHT THERE

But there were also GIANT! FUCKING! SHARKS! RIGHT THERE! IN THE TANK! WITH US! SWIMMING RIGHT OVER MY HEAD! *RIGHT THERE*! There were several times I was swimming merrily along, minding my own business, checking out the rays or looking for sharks teeth, and I happened to glance up and THERE WAS A SHARK! RIGHT THERE! RIGHT OVER MY HEAD! I could have touched the damn thing had I stretched my little phalanges out, but I wouldn’t, because the guy warned us that a shark might mistake stretched out phalanges for food. I like all my fingers, thankyouverymuch.

Turtle

The dive was SO COOL though. It was amazing to be so close to all those animals; a couple of times I thought a little male ray was gonna run into me. And I got to pet turtles! It was amazing! But you know what the best part was? Looking at all the kiddos through the glass of the tank. I really wish Feller had gotten some pictures of the people looking in at us, because seriously? My favorite part. I can remember what that kind of experience would have been like for me as a kid, so I can sort of imagine what the kids I waved at were thinking as they watched us in full scuba gear swimming with crazy huge fish.

After the dive, we wandered around the aquarium together, and checked out, well, everything, but ESPECIALLY the baby mantas that had been born the week before. They were SO CUTE, and they obviously knew that people in front of their separate tank (so they wouldn’t get eaten) meant FOOD. They swam right over to us and stuck their little lips out of the water looking for a treat of some sort. If there hadn’t been a sign right in front of me (in RED) that said NO TOUCHING, I would have pet those cute little suckers.

Diving Together

It was an amazing day, and definitely one I look forward to revisiting next time we’re in Cape Town.

We’ve been home since Friday evening, recovering from our awesome, if a bit excessively long and not terribly RELAXING, trip, and I have SO MUCH to tell y’all about! I almost don’t know where to start. We had SUCH a lovely time, and surprisingly, despite a couple of spats here and there, Feller and I still like each other! And still want to spend time together! It’s amazing! Parents were amazing and hospitable and kept us really well fed, and I am so grateful to them for putting us up for so long.

I actually have postcards that I wrote in the London Heathrow airport that need to be mailed. Whoops. But at least they were written overseas? A for effort? It’s just a matter of getting to the post office, but I find I can’t be arsed to put on clothes much the past few days. Tomorrow, I have a couple other errands to run, so I’ll mail postcards then.

Anyways, Cape Town was beautiful, and my pictures can all be found here.

RUNNING CHEETAH

Easily the best part of our trip was our visit to Spier Cheetah Reserve. We went early and got to see the volunteers exercising the cheetahs, and since we were the only ones there, the volunteers took us around to look at the other animals at the reserve. They had an adorable pair of meerkats, bat eared foxes, some sort of jackal, a couple of servals, and the prettiest, friendliest caracal ever.

Curious Caracal

And THEN, we got to PAT A CHEETAH. His name was Pedro, one of the cheetahs we saw running earlier that morning, and he was SO HAPPY to be getting scritchens and was purring up a storm. SERIOUSLY, like the cutest thing ever, just about. It was such an incredible experience, and I’m so glad that we dragged ourselves out of bed early for it.

Patting the Cheetah

In other awesome, animal related adventures, we drove up to the Fairy Glen Game Reserve in Worcester. Since we had to be there ASS EARLY, and it was about an hour and a half from Parents’ place, we spent the night before in a little love and snack nest. And APPARENTLY, Worcester is one of those dinky little towns where everything closes at sundown because it took us FOREVER to find dinner. Finally, FINALLY, we came across a liquor store and were able to stock up on the necessities and get directions to dinner.

The entire time we were in Cape Town, the weather was BEAUTIFUL. Hot and sunny and amazing, so naturally, as we crossed the mountains to get to Worcester, the weather was cold and rainy and windy. Which was super because Feller only had shorts, and I only had my flippy floppies. It was AWESOME. Thankfully, the ranger who drove us around gave us XXXL raincoats, which saved the day. I would have been a Grumpy Gus if not for that giant yellow coat and hood. We saw all the animals we were hoping to see, and most of them had little babies running around, including a brand new baby springbok (sidenote: springbok are DELICIOUS), which was so cool and ADORABLE.

Elephant RIGHT BEHIND US

After previously hating on Reality for being a stone cold bitch, I spent Friday afternoon wigging out about work shit and talking to three of my best lady friends and discovered, thanks a new work schedule, with a little bit of effort, I WILL be able to take the extra time to keep traveling with my Feller! I haven’t really figured the post vacation work situation out yet, but I don’t much care about that. I’ll need to save the money from my extra hours of work, and I’ll be set for bills during that traveling time, plus my regular savings plan should give me a decent amount for the actual vacation.

I cannot even adequately express how happy this makes me. I was really REALLY not looking forward to coming home alone, trying to convince myself to go back to work alone, spending three weeks ALONE. I’m not usually all needy and codependent, but I have definitely come to rely on Feller’s support and cuddles, and I am relieved to not have to go an extended period of time without him.

Not to mention four weeks in South Africa, and potentially two weeks in the UK is going to be freaking ridiculous. South Africa is going to be so relaxing and fun. We’ll both be on vacation and hanging out with his family doing … stuff. I don’t even know what! Diving and hiking and wine tours and the zoo! And more! I don’t know! Fun stuff! Yay vacation!! The Feller will be working while we’re in the UK, so it’ll just be me wandering around England! Doing things! I don’t know what! People watching! That might be it! I won’t have much money! Exclamation points!

I’ve kind of always wanted to take one of those vacations where you don’t have any plans and you just wander around by yourself and enjoy the city life and people and everything. And now I can do that without worrying about kidnappings and being secretly murdered because people will be expecting me home at night! I won’t be able to disappear and have weeks pass before someone thinks that it’s odd I haven’t turned up! I have images of coffee shops and drinking tea and possibly scones and eating at cheap little deli’s and window shopping and hanging out in parks and shit. I don’t even know! You know what touristy thing I really wanna do? The Tower of London. Somehow my G’ma and I managed not to go there when we spent a week in London, and it’s the one thing I really wish we could have done. OO, maybe I can take my AMAZING Doc Marten’s in to get resoled? Did i give those away in the move? HMM, MUST INVESTIGATE.

So the point of all this: SUCK IT, REALITY.

So, quickly, check out my 2010 Book List! Eventually, I’ll get down to doing a Top Five of 2010, but it might be a couple of weeks. You know how I am about follow through.

ANYWAYS. The feller and I went home for Christmas and New Year’s. Well, my home. Arizona. We stayed a few days with my mom, until we decided that we needed some Grown Up Time and got a motel, which was AWESOME. OMG. Awesome. And then we were down in Tucson for about 5 days staying with my BFF and her hubby. And, fuck. It was SO NICE. We didn’t have a plan or an agenda or shit that we had to do. No wedding dress shopping or bridal showers or weddings or birthdays or preplanned bbq’s. All those things were fun, and I enjoyed doing them, but there’s something to be said for the freedom to chill and hang and do whatever you feel like doing.

We had dinner with friends and played with fireworks (they’re legal in AZ now!) (except bottle rockets; you still can’t have those) (how long before someone burns down his neighborhood, I wonder?) and made Christmas candy with Mariam and I got a new tattoo and we went shopping and drinking and just had a relaxing good time. It was EXACTLY what I was hoping for on this trip, and even though it wasn’t how my feller wanted to spend his Christmas break, he was wonderful and went along with everything I suggested.

The only bad thing is that I’m homesick like crazy now (though I suppose I will admit that the INTENSITY of my feelings are in part due to menstrual hormones). If I weren’t in a happy, loving and committed relationship, I’d pack up my stuff tomorrow and go home. And it’s not even that I don’t LIKE the Bay Area; I like it FINE, but it’s not my home. It’s not where my support system, all the people I love, is, and I just don’t know if I could ever feel about here the way I feel about there. Because it’s about more than just the people and relationships that I have there that I don’t have here; I LOVE Tucson. I love the desert and the mountains and the heat and the summer storms, and, I don’t know, I feel at home there. I have since the first day I moved down there. But for now, I just hope and pray that my path leads me home someday.

ANYWAYS. Tucson was awesome. Family was awesome. Friends were awesome. And everyone really liked the feller. All in all, it was a successful trip. And we came home to find our house-sitter was a secret cleaning freak (or maybe not so secret; I don’t know her life), and she left us a list of the things she had cleaned, which basically was ALL THE THINGS. NO JOKE, she DUSTED OUR CEILING, y’all. I don’t think I’ve EVER dusted a ceiling in my LIFE. AND she thought my kitties were adorable! Even Bandito, who’s kind of a shithead! So that was a pleasant surprise at 3 am when we got home.

So, good trip, good holidays and now it’s back to the same old same old for now. But I do believe change is a comin’ this year. I’m ready, I am.