Day 18: Hermanus to Kleinmond

Wow – what a day! See those people holding my leash? Well, those are the friendliest and most welcoming people I’ve come across since my journey began (other than our pet-friendly hosts, of course! And a few others :-). Anecia Abrahams is from Kleinmond Tourism and Grant Cohen – he’s the Ward Counsellor for Kleinmond and the Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services in the Overstand. That’s where we ended our day. But more about that later.

So, to begin at the beginning (like, this morning) we left our overnight spot at Grotto Beach picnic site in Hermanus to start Day 18 of my Walk 4 SOS Huskies journey. The Fossil (aka Des) said that we’re not going to walk much today ’cause of the rocky coastline along the stretch from Hermanus to Vermont. So, he drove us in the Mahindra PIKUP to a place just outside of Hermanus where’s there’s the most amazing views over the town and visiting whales in the Atlantic Ocean.

“You can see all the way to Walker Bay from here. And there’s Grotto Beach. See it? Where the beach extends into the Klein River Lagoon,” said the Fossil. Yeah, and I can see that 18km stretch of beach that I wanted to walk, but couldn’t, ’cause Cape Nature doesn’t consider dogs to be a part of nature, I thought.

From Rotary Way, we passed Sandbaai and pulled in at the next village; Onrus. “Onrus means ‘restless’ in Afrikaans. The name refers to the pounding of the surf on the rocky coast,” the Fossil continued in his tourist guide-like monotone. He even asked a passing tourist to take a photo of us. Doesn’t he look cute? Me, I mean – not the Fossil!

After that, we pulled into a place called Hawston, about 11 km from Hermanus. “And that name comes from a civil commissioner of Caledon, C.R. Haw,” the Fossil quipped. And I suppose the ‘ston’ part of the name means ‘as high as one can throw a stone’ (which it does, ’cause I looked it up). I wonder if this Haw human liked throwing stones high or if he was thrown around like a stone 🙂 .

Anyway, at Haw-throw-a-ston I took the Fossil for walkies along a long stretch of beach ’til we couldn’t go any further. That’s ’cause the Fossil didn’t want to get his paws wet – I mean feet wet – crossing the Botrivier Lagoon mouth!

So, from there we turned off the R43 road and drove to the un-pet-friendly Arabella Resort (I know this ’cause the Fossil went to the Hotel reception and asked them) and then along along the R44 to Kleinmond. That’s where we met Anecia and Grant who I mentioned at the start of this blog post.

Well, that’s why I said they’re the most welcoming people I’ve come across since my journey began. Because Grant gave me, not one, but two, bones to chew on! Not just any old bones, like the chicken bones I sniff out when walking, but real beefy bones!

And Anecia even gave the Fossil a bone to chew on. OK, not a bone but the human equivalent – a chicken pie and some ‘padkos’ fruit & nut nibbles. And a bottle of water and a bottle of ‘egte Gemmerbier – gemaak op die plaasmanier’ (that means ‘Real Farm-Style Ginger Beer’ – and it’s made right here in Kleinmond). I wonder how Anecia knew that’s the Fossils favourite beverage?

And then our reception committee, along with another person, Gamat Van Eeden (I’ll tell you about him in tomorrows post), said that we can stay in a cottage instead of sleeping in the PIKUP parked in the Kleinmond camping site grounds. What a luck! The cottage grounds are fenced, so I can run around without my Rogz (the worlds coolest pet gear brand on planet earth) harness on. The Fossil always worries about me running away, which I will if I get a chance – but I’d come back, in my own good time – we Huskies are like that.

“This cottage is called the Frank Robb Hut – he donated it to the community so that others can share his love for the surrounding hiking trails in the fynbos environment. He was born in 1905 and died in 1995,” said the Fossil, who read the faded plaque inscription next to the front door. Inside, there are three rooms with ten beds for people to sleep on. And a long trestle table for the Fossil’s iMac so he can ghost-write my blog posts (I’d write these myself but my paws are too big for that tiny keyboard).

BTW, I heard Counsellor Grant telling the Fossil that the Kleinmond camping site is closed to the public, so we’re the only odd-couple here. It’s actually not pet-friendly, yet! But if Counsellor Grant gets his way, it soon will be. “Dogs on leashes are allowed on most of our beaches, except for the Blue Flag beaches in season, and we’re re-looking at signage at some beach sites to allow dogs to free-roam off their leashes,” he said. Now that’s music to my Husky ears!

Oh yes, the Fossil can also use the camping site ablution block that’s just down the road from the rustic cottage (which doesn’t have a bathroom). Boy, was the Fossil glad to have a hot shower! That’s the first shower he’s had since our stay at Cape Agulhas Backpackers, five days ago. Dunno why that’s a big deal – the last bath I had was twenty days ago, at The Pooch Parlour in Alberton, Johannesburg, and I don’t stink! “Well, maybe a dog groomer here in Kleinmond or further along your journey will sponsor another bath for you, my boy,” says the Fossil.

That’s it for now Husky loving folks! Tomorrow, we’re meeting up with Gamat to plan a walk along the beach, and maybe along some hiking trails in the Hottentots-Holland mountain range behind the cottage.

Wanna talk to us? Wanna host us? WhatsApp the tall fossil hanging onto my leash. Here’s Des’s number: +27 (0)82 374 7260. We’d love to hear from you!


PS. That extra X on the end of my name is supposed to be a kiss (yeah, I know it’s soppy).

BTW: if you happen to be in or near near Cape Town on Sunday 29 August 2021, why not join us? We’ll be walking the final leg of my journey from Hout Bay to Mouile Point at the V&A Waterfront. So, join us! Come say “Howzit Husky Boy!” (and ” Hello Fossil Man” if you want).

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