It’s our last full day at Fynbos and I wake up early. Somehow over the past few months I seem to have become a morning person. Problem is, I’m also a night person, which doesn’t leave much time for sleep. There’s something about the solitude of morning I’m learning to enjoy. I decide to take a longer walk today.
I head up past the main house and out to the road and then back. As I pass by the front gates, I can hear the occasional scream-like squawk from behind the treeline. When we first arrived at Fynbos I assumed those screams were from monkeys but it turns out they’re peacocks that live on the property next door. Normally, sounds like that would be unnerving, but in the past week I’ve gotten used to [and kinda like] all of these new sounds as well as the random unidentified rustling in the bushes.
When I get back, we have breakfast at a nearby café called Heath. Then we stop to pick up more groceries since tonight I’m making my homemade pasta sauce.
While out and about this week, I took some photos in the grocery store to show you what food looks like and how much it costs in South Africa. At the time of writing, the conversion rate of Rand to Dollar is 15.3. To put it into simpler terms, each 1 Rand [ZAR] is the equivalent of .65 USD. Needless to say, the dollar stretches a long way right now in these parts, especially when you take into consideration the lower cost of living. Here are some popular grocery items and what they cost in Rand & USD:
Strawberries – 29.99 ZAR = $1.96
Basil – $7.99 ZAR = $0.52
Tomatoes – 12.99 ZAR = $0.84
Green onions – 8.99 ZAR = $0.58
Lettuce – 11.99 ZAR = $0.78
(Decent) wine – 55.99 ZAR = $3.66
(Decent) steak – 55.43 ZAR = $3.62
Loaf white bread – 12.99 ZAR = $0.84
1/2 dozen eggs – 14.99 ZAR = $0.98
1 liter milk – 12.99 ZAR = $0.84
Cheddar cheese block – 20.40 ZAR = $1.33
Can of soda – 7.50 ZAR = $0.49
Chocolate bar – 8.99 to 14.99 ZAR = $0.58 to $0.98
Cheeseburger – 50.00 ZAR = $3.27
Cup of coffee – 16.00 ZAR = $1.04
To give South Africans an idea of how cheap that is, on a recent shopping trip for similar items I spent $12.80 for a steak, $14.99 for a bottle of wine, $2.99 for a container of tomatoes, $4.99 for cheese and $3.99 for milk.
After shopping and a brief stop at the beach, we return to the cottage. I spend the rest of the afternoon editing K I I out on the main patio of the B&B. As I try to concentrate, I’m distracted by Riley, the pig, who’s trampling loudly nearby in the bushes.
Our evening ends with another fire and the beginning of the latest Bond film, Spectre. I say beginning because we both fell asleep within the first 30 minutes. It would take us 3 days of watching and falling asleep to finally get to the end.