Thursday, August 28, 2008

Eish! More Statistics

This time of year in Johannesburg is just absolutely fantastic, cool crisp mornings and warm days. Last Sunday Jason and I did our first ride from my house out to Northern Farm for a long time which I thoroughly enjoyed in spite of some of the sights on the way.

We were barrelling along next to the river and just about to go under the N1 when we were forced to a skidding halt by a large green metal fence which has mysteriously appeared across our path. There was no way around it so we had to backtrack and try going down the other side which proved a little trickier than expected. Basically we had to walk along a 6" concrete strip with a 5m drop on the one side and very steep embankment on which we wheeled our bicycles on the other. To make it a little more difficult, there were pillars supporting the road overhead to get around as well. As we approached the other side we could see people milling around but it was only when we got quite close that we could see the wreckage of a car which had obviously come off the highway. What a mess, but it was only when we got really close that we realised that there was a dead body lying close to the vehicle. Worst of all, we had to jump/run down these giant steps and walk right past the body which was staring sightlessly into the sky.
We speculated that since the dead person was definitely not dressed in a manner one would expect the owner of the now totalled car to dress; that he was was a car thief who had either lost control or taken an off-ramp which wasn't and fell the 15m or so from the bridge. I was surprised at how little I felt looking at the body, I would have expected that the experience would have been more emotionally traumatizing but it wasn't.
We received a bit of a scolding from the site foreman about how dangerous it was for us to pick our way through his construction site to which we politely asked that he provide an alternative route for us to use. We also asked that someone at least put a blanket over the body. Back on the track and pounding the hills was great fun but it is quite amazing at how the paths have changed since we last rode this way.
We met Kathy and Kelly at the coffee house at Northern Farm after our ride and while Kathy and I chatted and drank coffee, Jason took Kelly for a ride which Kelly seemed to really enjoy which bodes well for the future.
Jason and I rode back to his place, our legs starting to get a little sore so it was great to be fetched by Caron rather than having to ride all the way home.

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