Other Almy Family News
Visit to South Africa by Hope Hamilton (1235-4131-1213)
Hope wrote "My daughter said she'd give me a trip anywhere in the world for graduating from Fort Lewis College. I chose South Africa cause I like "wild things." But my favorite "wild life" was the tuxedo-dressed penguins - a colony at Boulders Beach."
"These monogamous creatures are called "Jackass," because they bray like donkeys. The name "African" penguin has now been officially adopted to distinguish it from the jackass penguin found in South America. There were only two pair in the bushes in 1983, but since then, breeding and immigration have grown the colony to 2,350 birds as of 1997."
"The landscape around False Bay (named because voyagers thought you could go through the bay instead of having to go around the Cape of Good Hope) consists of huge boulders. The boulders are formed of granite from hot and molten lava 300 million years ago. (This bit of knowledge is a bonus to me, because I took geology three times at Fort Lewis.)"
"Capetown is unique because the Indian Ocean meets the Atlantic, and it is cold on one side and warm on the other. The beaches are pristine, and the water is clear.
A large mountain in the horizon is called "Table Mountain." When
the clouds come in, it looks as if a tablecloth covers the mountain. We
rode a tram to the top of Table Mountain. The bird's eye view of the city
and harbour is breath-taking."
"Another wonderful experience was going by ferry to Robben's Island to visit the prison that was home to Nelson Mandela for much of the 27 years (1963-90) that he was a political prisoner. An ex-inmate led our tour, which made the visit extremely realistic."
"Wine-tasting tours are a must-do tourist attraction in Capetown. We went to the estate of Stellenbosch. This is like a social cocktail party. We met many people from all over the world as we tasted our numerous glasses of wine. (No worry, they give you only a sip of each wine, which probably adds up to one glass.)"
"And this was just the beginning of our two-week tour of Africa, and I haven't even told you about the "Wild life" with the "big five." (Those most popular creatures you expect to find when you go to Africa.)"