Monthly Archives: August 2014

With one week to go, what Oliver is looking forward to in Africa

We are trying out video diaries for our African blogging. We’d like to be able to send links to Oliver’s class (3/4T) and Louisa’s class (KR) and let their classmates follow along with Oliver and Louisa’s journey. I am struggling a bit with uploading videos to the blog on iPhone or iPad. I can get it to work on my laptop but I won’t be taking my laptop. So after some fiddling around here goes. A short video of Oliver describing what he is looking forward to in Africa (in two parts via Instagram, which has a 15 second limit, or the full version via You Tube). We now have an Instagram account and a YouTube Channel you can subscribe to where our photos and videos will appear as I work out the best workflow for blogging on the go. Look for “oliverandamandaineurope”:


Part 1:


Part 2:



Or try this link of the full video from You Tube:


Towards African skies

…His path was marked

By the stars in the Southern Hemisphere

And he walked the length of his days

Under African skies.

In February this year I posted about a planned trip to South Africa in May 2014. Although Peter went ahead with his conference travel, our family holiday was postponed due to my work commitments. So now we leave for Johannesburg and the start of our 17 day African adventure in exactly 2 weeks.

We fly out of Sydney Friday morning and arrive in Johannesburg Friday evening. We then travel to Maropeng, home of the Cradle of Humankind: birthplace of humanity. “Maropeng” means “returning to the place of origin” and we will be able to tour the Sterkfontein caves where scientists have discovered almost complete Australopithecus skeletons dating back more than 3-million years.

From Maropeng we return to Pretoria to board the historic Blue Train and start a 28 hour journey to Cape Town through the heart of South Africa. From their website:

As time meandered from the 19th Century towards the dawn of the new era, a dream was born. A dream of harnessing steam technology to link Africa’s vast south to north, around the awe-inspiring mountain ranges that dot the continent, through the apparently arid desert landscapes, over untamed savannah grasslands teeming with wildlife. From the Cape all the way to Cairo… all of this on parallel lines of tempered steel.

It is from this dream that The Blue Train was born. Cairo was never to be, but the dreamers persevered and The Blue Train now traverses South Africa and its breath-taking scenery in a manner that befits the mystique that has grown around it.

Welcome aboard The Blue Train. Your unforgettable experience is about to begin…

Louisa is looking forward to seeing the wildlife, African playgrounds, and the white rocks (white stone cairns that mark the graves of British soldiers who fell during the 1879 Anglo-Zulu war, which she saw in a picture in one of our guidebooks). Most of all she is looking forward to seeing African Hunting Dogs (her namesake!).


So onwards to African skies. More updates soon …