Botanical Gardens

July 16th, 2006 by Thinus Leave a reply »

Johannesburg Botanical Gardens, Emmerentia
Near: Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
GPS: -26.15205, 28.00333
When: 2006-07-16
Who: Thinus
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Botanical gardens normally house an interesting bird or two. I arrived here with binoculars, water bottle and over sized nougat bar. As I entered the gates I noticed this afro-haired Rasta guy with his large earphones dancing on his iPod all over the place. As this might seem ‘normal’ in most big cities, I just walked over to the big board with a map of the place so we could plan our day.

Rasta man’s reflection in the map board was shuffling closer and closer. Realizing he’s on a collision course, I decided that I’m not playing nice today, and planted my feet firmly in the ground. When he bumped me I didn’t move, so he turned around, looked up and mumbled sorry. He kept on dancing and on his second approach Botanical Gardenshe hit me I bumped back and shouldered him off balance. That’s when I decided its better to just get in and get out of his way. But 2 guys ran to me armed with a clipboard, two-way radio and digital camera. They revealed the two video cameras that were hidden under cammo-nets. I became the latest star on Jeremy Mansfield and Whackhead Simpson’s prank show on satellite TV, ‘Laugh out loud!’ So my mug shot and details were taken and I was told to watch M-Net on Wednesday evening.

The gardens are situated next to the Emmerentia dam and the first thing of interest the huge number of ducks, geese, coots and feral pigeons. Obviously used to people, they all came to beg for the bread that I didn’t bring.

Botanical GardensWalking through this massive park in the middle of our largest city, it ss clear that winter is with us. The huge lawns were snow white from dead grass, and only few trees still had its autumn oranges and reds.

It also became clear that this is a city-dog’s dream as numbers of people came here to walk their security-complex best friends who loved every moment running around, chasing birds and swimming between the ducks. Before going back home, dripping and muddy, in the BMWs or Mercedes parked outside.

After 4 hours and only covering half of this diverse eco-system, I left for Monti Casino to meet up with Werner for a bite and a movie in I’l Grande.

All and all a good day.

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