Frost, Fire, Friends – Winter in the Berg

Humans are weird. Well more the choices they make than anything else. Take a global view – look at Earth from space. What do you see human-wise? Do you notice they live all over the globe? Little bare-foot guys running around in deserts, others in the tropical sweaty jungles. Fur-clad cousins out in the freezing snow-lands. We live everywhere and everyhow – we adapt; and the route marches of humans over the millennia have made us who we are today. Thankfully, we are South African. We have a climate where we are t-shirt tanned in summer and maybe only a jacket in winter – generally speaking. Maybe its because of this temperate climate, that snow is quite a novelty for us and we travel miles to see it, dress up to be in it; and strangely, look forward to being cold, so we can get warm. We want a scene from our films and story books so winter at home just doesn’t quite seem to cut it.

Where better in our land than the Drakensberg! Our very own Rockies and Alps. No matter how many times one approaches the Berg, seeing the peaks rise at you over the horizon is awesome every time. The vast, tall walls of rock, towering out of the comparatively green flatlands below; even without snow, offer a contrast that we see nowhere else in the country on that scale. But add the cold air, the crunchy frosted grass underfoot, and a white winter cap to the peaks and you have a recipe that we humans seek out for revival of the soul. Walking, hiking, biking, fishing, chilling… We seem to love the boots, beanies, scarves and gloves – and yes, it is fun to get out and experience that – so long as at the end of the day there is a warm cabin, a cold gurgling stream, a crackling fire, good friends and a glass of red wine.

Around the world we humans live in extremes – and we have vastly contrasting comfort zones that we must leave from time to time, a novel venture or a change from the norm. For Saffas, the Berg may not be an extreme, but certainly, there is plenty to make you feel you are somewhere different and special – and you also won’t feel that you need to go home soon. For many, the Berg is home – and they welcome you to their world with warm hearts and open arms – so if you still have cold feet, then maybe you are just weird. 😊