Mari Taketa and Melissa Chang

Honolulu, Oahu, Hawaii - USA

11 April 2009

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DAY 1       DAY 2

DAY 4       DAY 5




Bette and I joined Mari, Melissa as well as their hosts in Cape Town viz. Carol and Alistair De Wet at Saigon restaurant for a meeting up dinner.





We stopped in at McDonalds in Worcester as Mari wanted to compare the McDonalds in USA to those in SA.


We stopped in at Affie P:laas in Roberston where the owner of the farm stall introduced Mari and Melissa to reduced balsamic vinegar.


Fun picture of Mari at Affie Plaas


Mari enjoying bobotie at La Belle Alliance in Swellendam


Mari and Melissa enjoying the fire at the CV cottage


Later on in the evening Katriena served us a wonderful fried hake dinner

Enjoying some port  at the fireplace after dinner





Mari and Melissa outside the CapeVaccas cottage before leaving the establishment


We stopped in for a wonderful coastal oyster lunch at the Knysna Oyster factory





We travelled on to the Storm River adventure camp where Mari and Melissa went on the Treetop Canopy tour


Melissa being kitted out by Bernadine who was the guide on board during the canopy tour


Ockie (safety guide) helping Mari kit up.



Leaving for the forest



Two very pensive looking treetop flyers before the adventure begins JJ


Flying through the trees with the greatest of ease



Melissa looking very happy while on the Treetop Canopy Tour


After our Treetop Adventure we travelled to Port Elizabeth where we checked into Lemon Tree Lane before going for dinner to Old Austria restaurant.



On this day Mari and Melissa went on the Schotia safari which encompassed three safaris on the Addo National Park as well as Schotia gamefarm. A wonderful day was had by all which got a 9.5 out of 10 rating for animals spotted by the ranger who showed Mari and melissa around viz. Peter.




At Lemon Tree Lane before leaving the guesthouse


We had a wonderful cheese lunch at Alje where Boela, Alje's Rhodesian Ridgeback, tried to beg for as much food as possible. J





At the Bloukrans Bungy jump lookout


Melissa meeting some of the bungy jump crew - They could not convince her to jump. J



Shopping for curios at the Bloukrans Bridge


Leaving Thyme and Again after a short shopping stop


Admiring the views in Plettenberg Bay


After arriving back in Knysna we went to Firefly restaurant where we enjoyed the wonderful cooking of Dell and Sancha

Mari, Dell and Melissa


Melissa eyes the wonderful food at Firefly




At Overmeer before leaving for the Knysna village and Cape Town


At The Heads in Knysna


Melissa admiring the scenery at The Heads


Mari hopes to see whales at The Heads - Alas this did not happen unfortunately


Melissa and Mari at The Heads


Shopping at Fruit and Veg in Knysna



We stopped in for a late lunch at Riviersonderend where it can be seen that we enjoyed some wonderful pastries.


It was wonderful fun travelling with Melissa and Mari. This tour was a gastronomic delight as both Mari and Melissa showed an enormous amount of interest in South African food. They certainly enjoyed themselves doing this and make no error so did I. We had an absolutely marvellous time together and it was just such a pity that we only had 5 days at our disposal to do so. It was an absolute pleasure for me to take these ladies down the Garden Route and on many an occasion I needed to remind myself that we were on tour as we were having such fun together as a small group travelling all along the Garden Route. Great journey.





Received 20 April 2009

Aloha Selwyn, 

Thank YOU for all that you did for us and for your hospitality. I hope we can help encourage tourism to S. Africa thanks to all the wonderful experiences we shared. I do regret to inform you that I have to take the suitcase after all. I inadvertently over-shopped!

Hopefully we will meet again. At the very least, we will see each other on

Tot Siens,

Received 24 April 2008

aloha selwyn,

am finally just now waking up, still v jetlagged, and have just had a chance to view the pictures on ur site. was all that really only last week??!!

this was a truly glorious trip. of all my memories of cape town and south africa, i have u to thank for a large part. u orchestrated a wonderful tour, down to every detail, including wine pairings and candy tastings at truck stops and farm stalls. culinary highlights: sauvignon blanc and bobotye at la belle alliance, dry rose and those oysters in knysna, sauvignon blanc again and alje's cheeses, bread and salad (thnx for throwing in boela and company), my hake revelation at cape vacca, and those apple tarts at riviersonderend, which carol, alistair and their friends did marvel at. u are a food finder extraordinaire!

and a great storyteller, let me tell u! i enjoyed our conversations and debates as we drove thru safrica's beautiful countryside. i hope one day soon to come back and tour the township w/ u. my big regret is that i missed out on the major part of the safrica story, that i did not have a single meaningful conversation w/ a non-white during my 12 days. i feel it almost as a moral error; certainly as a journalist it is inexcusable. i'm sry i realized this too late.

i hope u will always live life as a perennial vacation. whenever u have a curry at zorina's, an apple tart at riviersonderend, a knysna coastal oyster or one of alje's cheeses, count urself extra lucky, as i'm pining for all at this moment. and do get to bo kaap kitchen for the koesisters--i never had a chance to go back, and that's another regret.

dankie, selwyn, and tot siens!