We spent the heritage weekend on a little road trip to the Klein Karoo. We stayed in a beautiful artist’s cottage on a farm other side of Calitzdorp and attended the Succulent Festival at the old railway station in town. In Afrikaans succulents are called vetplante, or “fat plants”.

We went on a fascinating guided walk and were astounded by the creative strategies that these plants have devised to survive. Some use their roots to pull the whole plant below the surface of the soil to escape the midday heat. Others keep the previous year’s dried flowers attached by a thread to their dried out stems. When the breeze blows, the flowers do an animated dance and look like busy ants. Any hungry caterpillar passing by decides to rather look elsewhere, far away from biting ants, for his lunch snack.

Did I mention the mountains? Soaring, folding, mountains with holes in them, dark mountains, red mountains.

And wisteria. Raining down. Everywhere.