Sani Pass

The Sani Pass is the only route passable for motorvehicles that connects the east of Lesotho to Kwazulu-Natal in South Africa. The beginning of the Sani Pass road stands at 1544 meters, and at the top the height is 2876. Especially the final kilometers of the Pass are steep and tricky to drive – which is why only 4×4 vehicles are allowed on the road. In winter, parts of the road are always in the shadow, and streams of water turn into ice. A real adventurous journey!

The Good Shepherd

On the Lesotho side of the Sani Pass, there is a small Pentecostal church. Siphiwe, the pastor, showed us a traditional homestead and how to wear the traditional Lesotho blankets His wife had prepared some delicious bread in a pan on a cow dung fire. The church was not officially part of this cultural expierence, but we were allowed to look inside as well. Inside we found Siphiwe’s wife washing clothes – the church doubles as the pastor’s house and living room. On the wall there was this mural of a shepherd carrying a sheep. Most of the congregation consists of shepherds who come to the Sani Pass area in summer to graze their sheep. This image of the Good Shepherd clearly touched them. I think it’s a really strong, contextual image of the Gospel!

Drakensberg hike

A beautiful hike in the Garden Castle section of the Drakensberg Mountains. The hike goes up to a cave called Pillar Cave. Although we didn’t make it all the way to the cave (still struggling with my back…) the scenery was amazing. The smoke in the background is from controlled burning of the grasslands to create firebreaks, protecting the World Heritage Site of the Drakensberg.

White tiger at the zoo

I love the Pretstap zoo walk in the National Zoological GardenĀ in Pretoria that is organized every months by the Friends of the Zoo. It starts early, before the normal opening times. On Saturday we were able to watch the sun rise in a splendid orange sky. The early light makes photography so much more interesting than the flat, harsh light of the mid day. Also, the predators are usually quite active during this time. This white tiger had just finished drinking and was now starting at his neighbor in the next enclosure. What a magnificent animal!