Wednesday, November 21, 2012

An Mpumalanga Road Trip to Chrissiesmeer

Early on the morning of 17th of November I took to the road and headed out of Joburg for the green hills and pastures of Mpumalanga. To be more specific I was bound for Chrissiesmeer and the annual Frog Festival. Which this year would take place on the banks of lake Chrissie at the Genesaret Camp grounds. We had secured accommodation at the camp ground in a delightful little chalet which sleeps 10 and has all the mod cons you need for a chilled weekend at the dam.

Some of my time was spent exploring Chissiesmeer and having a picnic Lunch at the old Dunbarton Oaks Hotel (now in a state of neglect and needing some serious TLC.  As we were picnicing we had no problem all we needed was a comfy spot on some soft green grass free from cow pats. The afternoon was spent relaxing on the patio of the chalet watching the fishermen and sipping on a brew.
As the evening and the main Frogging event drew nearer so did the weather. It became more and more ominous and eventually the storm broke which exited everyone as this would bring the Frogs out. The storm also took out the power which caused chaos as there was then a mad dash to get a generator so that Jerry Theron - A herpetologist with a speciality in the field of amphibians could do his presentation before taking us out to catch frogs.

At this point I became distracted by the sunset and missed Jerry's talk while keeping my shutter clicking catching the after storm sunset. You will probably agree that the distraction was worth it.

After a hearty meal provided by the Vroue Federasie the frog hunters set out to a nearby pan in search of frogs. At this stage I opted not to tag along as I have been on many previous frog hunts so I turned in for the night so I could be fresh for the next day's visit to Florence farm and the Venue which I blogged about last year while "The Venue" was being built. Now I was going back to see it in all it's glory.

Lake Chrissie

Some totally awesome cattle that I spotted alongside the rood on route to Florence Guest Farm. 
Just had to stop and do a few photo's especially of this stunning black & white cow.

Ane and Nico have truly outdone themselves with "The Venue" and the extended rooms they have added to the Florence Guest Farm. Ane kindly took us round to show us all the new additions and the completed Venue. If you or anyone you know is planning a wedding this is a venue well worth considering as it is just perfect in evryway. Ane and Nico will make you feel like family while you are there and everything will be perfect for your special day. As there had been a wedding the previous evening I could not get pictures of all the room ( an excuse to return) and of The venue but I did manage to get a few just to give you a feel of how amazing The Venue and Florence Guest farm are.

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Harry & Alistair Surprise Celebrations

You might ask was the no 42 or the words don't panic and reference to the Restaurant at the end of the Universe have to do with this blog. Well the answer can be found by drinking a pan galactic gargle blaster which is is said is like having your brains smashed out by a slice of lemon wrapped round a very large gild brick.  For many months Michele has been planning a surprise celebration for both her hubby Harry and her nephew Alistair and of course trying not to panic about how she would pull the entire thing off without them finding out.

Alistair turned 21 in October and Harry 50 in November as both birthday fell fairly close together Mich made it a combined celebration. All they knew was to keep 10 Nov free as she was taking them out for dinner and they duly obliged despite having a few suspicions and trying very hard to get anyone in the know to confess to the greater schemes and plots.

Unbeknown to Harry and Alistair, Mich had arranged an even bigger surprise for them on the evening of the party. Needless to say both were completely gobsmaked when the big surprise was revealed. The Big surprise was that she has arranged for Harry's sister and twin nephews, Alistiars' mom and his twin brothers to come to the party. Careen, Brian and Craig flew in from Sydney at about 3pm the afternoon of the party and where quickly whisked off to the venue for the big reveal and family reunion.

I hope that the images that follow will give you a small taste of the joint celebrations and great reunion.
Thanks Mich for asking me to be there to photograph this very special event for your family.