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Posts Tagged ‘sporty’

OMG, are we still doing this? Yes, apparently so. Even though it’s August now and we’ve just returned from an amazing 2-week holiday with John’s brother and his family which I’m dying to catalog… I still feel like I need to catch on the past first. Right then, let’s catch up to present-day already! In no particular order, we…

…cheered on the runners in the world’s largest and oldest ultra-marathon, The Comrades. Even on a “downhill” year like this year, I can’t wrap my brain around running 56 miles in a single day.

Pug catches some shade on a hot and sunny day

…dabbled in boozy gummi candies! Grape candy + coconut rum = delicious. Gummi cola bottle candy + bourbon = gross.

For one of the Aussies’ many going-away parties – with a Georgia theme, natch.

…spent a fabulous weekend at our friend Ed’s house in Leisure Bay on the South coast, celebrating his fiancee Dana’s birthday.

Family portrait on the exact rock where our friends got engaged earlier this year. Aww!

We’ve invented African Rules Corn Hole, which involves a small and feisty Pug running back and forth between the boards. She occasionally steals a bag, but she’s completely impartial and always an equal handicap to both sides.

…spent a lovely but stormy evening at the rugby.

Sharks win!

…finally said a sad goodbye to the Australians who officially went wheels up at the end of the month.

What so proudly we ate, at the Moffitts’ last leaving.

…failed to snap any pics of the 5k that we ran – the same one I had done two years ago, and in which I trimmed 2 full minutes off of my official time to bring it down to a blistering 35 minutes! Hey, I run, which is all that I claim.

June, finis!

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Into the Abyss

Tuesday found me and the boys (minus Johnny G, who sadly had to work) on a short road trip down to Oribi Gorge, about 90 minutes south of Durbs. The gorge is, well, gorgeous, and pretty impressive at 27km long, 4km wide, and 400m deep.

Devin and Tyler could probably tell you more about it, as they got a good close-up look while dangling from the end of a rope on the “World’s Highest Gorge Swing”. Yes — they allowed themselves to be hooked up to a harness and then threw themselves off of the ledge. I almost threw up just watching!

I did venture close enough to the edge to capture some video footage — although I didn’t do a great job on Tyler’s jump (he went first) because I wasn’t out quite far enough. Check the video footage if you dare: Devin and Tyler.

Big smiles ... before signing on the dotted line to tackle the gorge swing.

Devin has a bit of an existential crisis while waiting his turn.

Contemplating the edge.

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Super Duper 15

This crooked, grainy, blurry photo of the Sharks-Lions rugby match pretty much captures the spirit of our evening.

After 3 hours’ sleep, a 3:30am wakeup, 4 border crossings, and an often stressful 11-hour drive, we arrived home around 4pm – in plenty of time to turn ourselves around for a 7pm rugby kickoff!

Gael is a massive rugby fan, and one of the few items on her must-do list was to take in a Super 15 match (S15 is the major SA / Australia / New Zealand league). Though we had to scrap our original plan to leave Moz on Friday (a story which, through the power of blog time-travel, you will learn about in a later post detailing our Moz adventure), we were absolutely determined to have her at the stadium by game time on Saturday.

Bleary-eyed and road-funky, we decided that the only way to make it happen would be to grab a quick shower, several drinks, and in the words of Wilson, “KEEP GOING!” And that is how we ended up several shots and 2 pitchers deep, drunk and delirious, cheering the Sharks to victory as Gael ticked “See Super 15 match” off of her bucket list.

The view from the perfect seats: first row upper level, centered behind the try-line, close to the beer stand.

[The blog is so far behind that I’m just dropping these posts on random (though sequentially accurate) dates – but for my own record-keeping, I’m noting the date the event actually took place at the bottom of each post. Actual date: April 9.]

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Olympic Proportions

Saturday found us hosting the first-ever Umhlanga Beer Olympics in honor of JG’s birthday. Fans were treated to displays of athleticism on the beer pong table and cornhole court, by delegations from Australia, England, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Ireland, Mauritius, the USA, and of course, South Africa.

Photo credit to Nikki M of Team Australia. Why? Because my camera is a POS. Will post more pics when somebody gives me some.

 

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A Real Dusi

One of my clients was the primary sponsor this year for the Dusi (pronounced “doozy”) Canoe Marathon. The Dusi is a 120km paddle from Pietermaritzburg to Durban on the Msunduzi River. The race takes place over 3 days, there are about 20km’s of portage (carrying your boat on land), several rapids, and a hell of a good time.

You can paddle solo or with a partner, and several boats have a support crew to help them between stages. My co-worker Steve has completed 11 of these, and has done the ‘Durban Triathlon’ 10 times – maybe a record – which consists of the Dusi, the Midmar mile (an open water swim), and the Comrades Marathon (the world’s largest and oldest ultramarathon – 90Ks (55 miles)! First run in 1921, and coincidentally for all you ‘Noke readers, also completed by the current owner and manager of the Texas Tavern).

There’s a huge party for the support crews after day 2, so guess which day I attended? We had access to the VIP tent at the finish – lots of beers, great view of the paddlers coming in, and of the ‘Dusi Floozies’ welcoming paddlers on shore.

Day 2 finishes at Inanda Dam and we were supposed to take a boat cruise… which we missed. So, what did we get to do instead? Take a helicopter ride through the “Valley of 1000 Hills”.

I’ve alwsys wanted to ride in a helicopter and this is some of the most breathtakingly beautiful land I’ve ever seen. I got to see it while cruising in a tiny chopper at hair-raising speeds, with no doors, and close enough to the ground to buzz cows is some spots.

The area is home to formerly displaced individuals that were moved out of cities by the past Apartheid government. It unfortunately has the highest concentration of HIV anywhere in the world, but there are lots of initiatives underway to help. Our client who sponsors the race has sponsored over 5000 local orphans to attend crèches (day-cares) set up in the area, and next year will raise this sponsorship to 5000 creches!

What an amazing day.

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Zip It

As part of our epic weekend in the mountains, we did the Drakensberg Canopy Tour, which is a series of 12 ziplines suspended in the treetops of the Blue Grotto forest. It was an amazing experience in a spectacular setting – even for dangerphobic me!

More photos in the slideshow from yesterday’s post.

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The Drakensberg

We’ve been lucky to make some great friends here in Durbs, and luckier still that some of them come with great perks like quaint mountain cottages!

Our friends Terry and Steph invited us up to their house in the Drakensberg mountains for the weekend, where we hiked, boated, swam, sunned, lounged, lawn-bowled, zip-lined, ate, drank, and even battled a baboon. An amazing time with awesome peeps! Check the slideshow for a full recap.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Click play to begin, and the arrows to navigate — or just click here to launch a full-size view of the album.

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