Road trip highlights fresh in my mind although December feels like a year ago.
I did this trip with my youngest daughter, Jo-Marie, who was the perfect travel companion.
When we hit the road, it was raining in Bloemfontein but I was blessed and had cloudy weather and no rain on the road.
All the way the most beautiful clouds accompanied us, which was the inspiration for my first ever cloud painting.
PITSTOP – BEAUFORTWEST:
We spent the first two days with an old school friend of mine on his farm, just outside of Beaufort West, where I had the privilege to experience his joy for the welcoming rain after several years of drought.
When the heavenly water hit the barren Karroo earth, we had no other choice but to go riding about the farm and rejoice along with him. Dusty gravel roads had turned into rivers of muddy water. Jo-Marie and I stood in awe of Mother Nature’s beauty, Anton, however, had a more active way of appreciating the rain. He stripped down to his Jockey’s and used the newly formed river as a splash pool.
NEXT STOP – MONTAGU:
It’s not a road trip if you don’t stop in Montagu!
Which is where we made our way next to visit my lovely cousin, Fida, and her family. We stayed at their lodge, Mimosa Lodge and Wines, for the two days, and were spoiled with exquisite food, great company and of course their beautiful boutique wines!
If you are in the region, make sure to pop in for lunch and/or wine tasting at Blu Vines, a stunning art deco restaurant located at the foot of a mountain along the Langeberg Mountain range, which encircles Montagu.
ROBBERTSON AND A VISIT TO MY WELL KNOWN AND LOVED ARTIST FRIEND- JUANETTE MENDEROI:
A lively and high energy environment. It is always such a treat to stay at Juanette! We decided beforehand that we were going to do a collaboration painting, and it was so much fun that we ended up doing two paintings which both sold before the paint got time to dry.
STELLENBOSCH- JIPPIE, TIME WITH MY MIDDLE DAUGHTER:
We booked in at The Court Yard Studios Air B&B and received a warm welcome.
We spent our days wandering through the vibey Stellenbosch streets, exploring the local galleries, and I even managed to work in a few paintings!
The first activity on our itinerary was to visit the Dylan Lewis Sculpture Garden.
I am not exaggerating when I say it was a life-changing experience. With the larger-than-life sculptures displayed throughout an Alice-in-Wonderland-esque garden, it is hard to determine if you are in reality or an ethereal dream.
This fantasy world was, ironically, a reality check for me, as I realized that art can be so much more than something viewed from the outside. It has inspired me to make larger works and remove the restrictions I have placed around my creativity.
Another of these magical experiences were Babylonstoren, an old Cape Dutch farm in the Franschhoek wine valley, where we wandered through the veggie gardens, fruit orchards, and greenhouses, after which we had a delicious charcuterie board, and enjoyed a few too many glasses of wine.
One thing is sure, when you are in the Western Cape, pizza and wine form the base of your food pyramid.
It was so nice to experience my daughter in her world and to do things with her and her friend.
We travelled the area looking for galleries but stumbled upon a fairy-tale-like wine farm instead, where the MOK art gallery is.
Muratie is a wine estate in the Knorhoek valley dating back to the 17th century. An estate with such a rich heritage, which you can learn about whilst tasting their delicious wines, as you will hear in-depth about the history of each of these wines.
On our way, we made a stop at the luxurious Quoin Rock wine estate which was in total contrast with the old world charm of Muratie.
After a last memorable night out with my daughters and Heloise’s friend ended off with ice-cream on a Stellenbosch street sidewalk.
A QUICK COFFEE DATE WITH ARTISTS HERMA KITCHING AND YVETTE BENEKE IN DURBANVILLE:
This was a nice catch-up visit, I wish I could spend more time with these two artists but had to hit the road, Gansbaai was waiting, but first legs stretch and a gin (for the road 😉) with another artist friend, Annette Roberts in Kleinbrak.
GANSBAAI AND HERMANUS:
Last stretch of my holiday.
It was so special to see my old Klerksdorp friend and her husband who relocated to Gansbaai – swimming in the cold water at Hermanus and visiting art galleries.
14 days after we left Bloemfontein we hit the road back.
One of the highlights of the road trip was a happy accident. On our way back when we took the wrong turn off to fill up my car in Richmond.
Tired and anxious to get home, we saw a place that looked interesting, and I almost did not stop but, man, am I glad that I did!
MAPSA is an art museum, filled with stunning installations, photography, paintings and sculptures.
This was my last burst of inspiration and I left there in awe and on a high!
Holiday behind the back, X-mas with my family and then a visit from my oldest daughter for a week of catch up.
2 weeks into 2022 I went on another bonus holiday with my parents to Chintsa.
Early morning jogs, journaling and reading on the beach while the sun rises over the ocean, painting on the “stoep”, sketching with my artist parents, reading, this is life!!
Although my December Road trip was fantastic, Chintsa was glorious, this is precisely the kind of holiday I love. Unpretentious, simple living, I felt at home there.
You park your car and never take it out of the garage, walk to the beach, the small café (where you can buy almost anything you need), and to the local restaurant.
BACK TO REALITY:
I am now back in full swing, inspired, and excited to see what the rest of the year will hold in for me!
Thank you for all the support during the holiday season, and for recommending all of these wonderful places! I look forward to filling your homes with the inspiration these past few months imprinted on me.
You are welcome to check out my available art in my gallery: