Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Day 00: March 28 Hello Capetown

It is time for us to relive our recent holiday to Capetown in South Africa where we have been participating foremost in an Ultra Marathon but also following it with an active holiday.

During the next 10 days we will be presenting the highlights and believe me there are many:

Our first stop was Dubai where we are just stopping over

This is our second ever trip to an Arab country and it takes some getting used to their alphabet even if there it is accompanied with an English translation.

A quick word of praise for the Marhaba business lounge at Dubai airport.   We have never seen a better food selection in any lounge ever. Period.

We had pre booked a modest VW Polo from Hertz Switzerland.  Actually it is advantageous to book this as a 'walk in' customer and not to use your Hertz#1 card, this being both cheaper and also giving you inclusive insurance.

We specifically ordered a modest car, but in the coming week it became clear that we had rather overachieved the aim of ordering an unattractive, safe and unstealable car.  Having said that despite the unexpected boot,  the lack of Bluemotion that I was promised, the sluggish performance, the car was at least clean reliable, economical and maneouverable.

After a few prayers to the Gods of Silicon heaven it came to pass that we were directed to the Vodacom store.  Here we bought the SIM card that we had researched previously.

We are inserting it into our multifunction Samsung Galaxy camera   which will act as Gamera, Internet Hotspot, GPS and more.

Having a constant Internet connection allows us to use Google Maps on our Chrome Laptop, phones and iPad, as well as keep up to date with important issues like the Archers serial on Radio 4

A 30 minute or so drive later we arrived at the Rockwell Suite Apartments Capetown.  By no word of a lie, Agata had spent over 12 hours researching Apartments and hotels, and this was to prove to be a truly excellent choice.  Well located in an upmarket area, full of restaurants and shops, and close to the Waterfront where we would be making a fun run and picking up our race numbers for the forthcoming Ultra Marathon.

I will make a fuller review of the Rockwell Suites as a separate post they are so good!  For now let us say that our suite had underground secure parking and that a security key is necessary to access the car park, and all lifts, or interconnecting doors.  We like security!

In the late afternoon we walked to the CTICC (Cape Town International Convention Centre) to visit the Marathon Expo and pickup the race numbers for the Friday Fun Run as well as the Saturday Ultra Marathon.

Marcus bought some Addidas Boost shoes with some innovative / weird polystyrene like soles.  They are designed to make running more energy efficient.  I had to decide whether I should use them on the runs or not?

The Marathon Expo also had a plethora of running creams and gels, vitamins and sports food.   Mostly local South African products and we are proud to say that we spent generously and came away with our mini rucksacks full of interesting produce.

Just to the left of the Sacred Heart church shown above is the SPAR supermarket open daily until 21.00  So our last task was to stock up on some essential supplies like milk, ice cream, and porridge.  This SPAR is more like a boutique supermarket and more upmarket than any British SPAR supermarket I have ever seen. Fantastic.

As researched by Agata we had a full kitchen with microwave, Fridge, freezer, washing machine and dish washer.  This will allow us to live comfortably and cleanly during our stay here.

So the end of a great first day in Cape Town.  We feel really at home already.

Waiting at Geneva Airport video

FORWARD Day 01: Friday March 29, Friendship Run
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