Picnic for the soul 

During March, KK’s Comrades training was at its peak. Waking up at 4am, running 100km’s a week, he was exhausted. So I suggested to him that instead of wasting the March public holiday, that perhaps we should go for a picnic somewhere & spend some time together “chillaxing”.

My idea was loading our straw basket with some cut up vienna sausages, blocks of cheese and packets of chips. But when I woke up that morning, he said, “Dress comfy, we’re going for a picnic. It’s a surprise!”

We took a leisurely drive out to Magaliesburg and I kept wanting to stop and take photos of the fields of cosmos that greeted us on our trip.

Cosmos flower in bloomcosmos flowers in bloomWe finally arrived at our destination. The Budmarsh Private Lodge, tucked away in the heart of the Magaliesburg mountains.

Budmarsh Private LodgeKK had pre-ordered our picnic basket so the only thing required from us was to decide on drinks and select a spot around the grounds to have our picnic. Mmm, that beautiful gigantic tree or that sunny chair next to the gentle flowing stream?

It was so quiet! Our voices seemed to pierce the silence that engulfed us. We tucked into the food immediately! It was delicious! With full bellies, we lay back and dozed off…

It was the perfect day. KK has been doing such intense training for Comrades so the day “off” allowed him to relax and sleep, guilt free.

I took a stroll along the little stream next to the house and tried to get the ducks to come say hello. But I was full of thoughts and allowed the beauty of the surroundings to speak to me. The only ones who did come bounding by to say hi (and possibly steal whatever was left in the basket) were two adorable basset hounds. Scrumptious food, wine, warm sun, overly-friendly dogs… I was officially in my element!

There are a couple of public holidays in South Africa coming up. If you haven’t yet decided what to do, consider driving out somewhere unknown and escaping the city. It doesn’t have to be a picnic. It doesn’t even need to be a public holiday. But it’s the silence and time away from the daily chores and routine that allows your body and soul to recharge.

And yes, that includes runners. Be kind to your body. Take some time to rest!

Escaping to Bushman’s Hide

I guess I’m like most people who signed up for the Groupon and Wicount daily deals email. I get that rush when I see deals that promise such massive discounts, but I’ve only ever bought meal vouchers.

That was until in August when I spontaneously bought a mini holiday break at a tented camp in the Waterberg called Bushman’s Hide. The deal was 80% off (too good to be true, right?) and promised a 2 night, 3 day stay including all meals in a secluded environment in the Waterberg.  

KK and I were lucky enough that when we booked, the days between Christmas and New Year were open and so we grabbed the opportunity to rest after the busy Christmas weekend.

What a surprise Bushman’s Hide turned out to be…

From the minute we arrived there, we were treated to 5-star treatment. Our luggage was carried to our luxury tent while we were ushered to the welcome area for a drink whilst our guide took us through the logistics and plans for the next two days. The difference is that, other than breakfast and supper times, we were free to do whatever we chose, we just had to inform the lodge of when and what it was.

So we acted like real honeymooners and chose to eat all meals at our room, booked a quad bike the following morning to view the game and decided to have a picnic, in the bush, followed by a massage (also in the middle of the bush).

The service at Bushman’s Hide is fantastic and even though they only have 4 tents (which means a maximum of 8 people can stay there at the same time) we totally felt as if we were the only ones there! The staff were at our beck and call the entire time.

Our bed got turned down at night with a little chocolate on our pillows and soft candles lit in the tent.

The best was the picnic in the bush, surrounded by nothing else but that zinging of insects and deafening silence, we read magazines and nibbled on cheese and biscuits until our masseuse arrived to give us both massages. In the bush!

The weather was overcast and on the 2nd day, we had light drizzle in the afternoon which was absolutely perfect for that afternoon snooze.

We had such a great time and with no cellphone reception (I know!) we were forced to do nothing else but read, sleep and relax.

It was wonderful!