Bloemfontein via the Garden Route to Cape Town

February 6, 2012 - Cape Town, South Africa

Noddy and the Beast return Home

Wow how can it be... a year gone but thanks to the blogs and pictures never forgotten, a wonderful adventure! We have moved back into our home and have been hectically busy getting things in order. Some people comment that they think it will be quite an adjustment for us after a nomadic year through Africa.... somehow I think it will be easy.  The excitement of seeing some of our friends and being back in our church made the first weekend a great feast for the soul! I ran out of steam when it came to the final blog so here it is very after the event and in-between a mixed bag.

Throughout our trip we have felt safe and welcomed; a fresh experience and a renewed faith in the goodness of humankind. We come home saying ‘go, taste and see for yourself’ drink in some rich experiences. Africa may seem scary to some, the unknown, but that is the beauty of it.... you will find your feet as you go just don’t plan too rigidly or travel too fast, let it unfold! At times it is a roller coaster ride of emotions but so worth it all. When things go wrong it is all part of the adventure in the end and makes for great stories!

You have probably heard it said that ‘Africa is not for sissies,’ this is true especially with a caravan in tow across rough terrain. George started dreaming and researching about this trip years before we went. En route he was meticulous with updating route plans according to our needs and local knowledge and with checking the budget which he had accurately projected. My husband (and Steve – our fellow traveller) amazed me many times with his skilfulness in fixing things and procuring the materials needed in remote places to get the job done. I am very proud of him!

I come home grateful that water comes out of my tap and it’s clean. I’m blessed that I don’t have to fetch fire wood to make my meals. I am glad I don’t have to till fields up steep slopes or lug my goods to market to put food on the table. We have driven past so many children barely clothed and labouring away when they should have been in school or playing........we take so much for granted!

As we drove along the Garden Route and into the Overberg we were reminded of just how much is on our own doorstep, stunning beauty and a whole world of adventure we look forward to coming back to some day. We stayed in Knysna visited the Birds of Eden and the Monkeys and wanted to do a lot more but things were complicated with timing and people.... far more important after a year of being on the road! Cheryl stayed over in Wilderness and we continued travelling to Cape Agulhas, another beautiful windy place. We were spoilt in Gansbaai and Hermanus staying over with very hospitable friends on our journey homeward, thank you Boet, Hannie, Sue and Bruce! In Gansbaai we did the shark cage diving and even though it was low season 6 different Great Whites visited the boat some for a few rounds. They were so fast and looked so big.... ‘5m’ that is what they said we would say! The largest shark was 3.5m, still very big from that cage for sure!

My excitement rose with the last stretch into Cape Town, we were hosted by John and Annick till our house came open on the 31st – thanks guys what a great time we had! Our first night was spent in our traditional Friday pizza spot with some dear friends and Saturday night we were treated to a good gathering of more friends for a welcome home braai. Of course there was also the Sunday feast of welcoming at church.....a truly wonderful weekend!

So it is the close of our story, thanks for joining us, if you did enjoy the blogs and never said anything this is your last chance.....say goodbye! To those who left comments – thank you very much, you perhaps don’t know how much it meant; we felt supported by you and so appreciated and enjoyed your contact over the 32500kms we have travelled with Noddy and the Beast! We have slept in Noddy (the caravan) 280 nights in about 115 campsites and have stayed in about 128 different places over 357 days!

Thanks be to God that we have gotten home safe and sound, thanks be to God for such a rich adventure and thanks be to God that we have come home with a deepened faith and a real knowing of God’s presence, provision and love for us – a treasure to be sure!



Along the Garden Route (3)
Along the Garden Route (4)
Birds of Eden (2)-550
Birds of Eden (3)-550


Sharon Johnson:
February 6, 2012
Welcome home! Hope to see you now as a neighbour in Rondebosh rather than traveller on the road somewhere in Africa! Well done on surviving and even triumphing on the adventure and thanks for sharing so generously of your experiences.
x Sha
February 6, 2012
Welcome home - its good to have you back!! Cant wait to catch up and hear all your stories and adventures!!! xxx
February 6, 2012
Welcome home from your awe inspiring journey my friends. Have missed you stax. Lol xoxo
February 6, 2012
What a wonderful adventure you've had. We are so happy to have you back. Hope that this year will bring more adventure of the local kind! Looking forward to many cups of coffee.
February 6, 2012
Welcome home!! I am sure you are enjoying you own bed
looking forward to catching up and seeing you guys again.!
February 6, 2012
It's great to have you back. I look forward to a kind of 'slide' show, you have taken so many amazing photos...... i want to see !
February 6, 2012
Yes, welcome home Guys!! Thank the Lord for his goodness and we look forward to catching up on your adventures, amazing to think a year has already gone by so quickly!
Moira Richards:
February 6, 2012
hey it was wonderful to see you yesterday. I admire you guys with a tinge of green jealousy for all you have seen and done. Welcome back. I trust you will settle easily but not get sucked into the "race" too fast.
Love you lots, I will miss your blogs.
Mark Edgar:
February 6, 2012
Excellent job Al! Sorry I never left a comment however I thoroughly enjoyed each blog and all the photos. Glad you are both back safely! Our Lord is mighty to save.
February 6, 2012
Thanx for sharing the close of your story!! For me this was a highlight blog _ I nearly read it with tears in my eyes - It is just SO AMAZING!!!!! what you could experience!!! Yes, God is GOOD and He is truly in LOVE with each of us, and His heart is to have the best for us and to be present in our hearts every moment. Thanx for sharing your trip!! And may 2012 be a total different but also AWSOME adventure with what God has in store for you!
Marie Grant:
February 6, 2012
WELCOME HOME, George, Alice, Noddy and the Beast!!! What an amazing experience! Many people just dream of it, you guys have tackled Africa by the horns. We praise and thank God for bringing you home safely. See you at Common Ground :-)
February 6, 2012
Dear both,
I can't say how sorry I am I won't be hearing more of your adventures!!! We really enjoybed being a small part of your journey and listing to all that followed. I do hope we'll stay in touch! Enjoy your renewed sense of presence in Cape Town and keep it for a while ;-)
Wilna En Koos Lourens:
February 7, 2012
Welcome home!
February 8, 2012
Congratulations on finishing your amazing adventure. It was great to meet you on the road in Tanzania and again in South Africa.
Many thanks for the tasty meals and great company. Keep in touch. Lots of love Debs, Matt and Toad (the intrepid cyclists) x
February 9, 2012
Hey Alice and George, Fantastic - have enjoyed reading all the stories and look forward to seing you later in the year in Cape Town - date sill to be sorted but hope to work on a 'build' with Habitat. Will call you soon Caralyn xxx
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