Art camp in the cradle of humankind

Cradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South AfricaCradle of Humankind, South Africa
After a crazy week in KwaZulu-Natal for work, I arrived in Joburg on Friday, went straight to work, then came home in the afternoon to exchange one packed bag for another. This past weekend was Art Camp – or my friend Nic’s birthday weekend away on a farm in the Cradle of Humankind about an hour’s drive from Johannesburg. As the name suggests, the Cradle is a fairly large area where many early human remains have been found; but this post is not about the history of the Cradle – you can google that if you wish.

The trip was exactly what I needed after my week – and the weather couldn’t have been more amazing. By 11 am it was so hot we had to change into shorts, and I spent most of the afternoon lying in a hammock. In the afternoon we took a drive to swim in a freezing cold rock pool on the property and then I hung back on the way down the hill to take photos of the sunset (as one does). But the real treat was when the sun went down and we could see all the stars – it was breathtaking. Living in a big city it becomes all too easy to forget how many stars there are in the sky (the photo where you can see the fence and the stars is my absolute favourite).

I enjoyed the stars so much that I actually slept outdoors in the hammock that night, after first napping for about 2 hours in front of the fire on the world’s tiniest bench. Despite the stunning daytime weather, it is late May and after sunset it was time to swap the shorts for a ski jacket. The night was pretty cold, and even with the ski jacket, sleeping bag and duvet, I woke up a couple of times from the cold after a foot or arm slipped out. I am sure this sleeping arrangement has also done nothing good for my cold, which I am struggling to shake off…but I would do it all over again in a second.

While lying there I wondered if early humans missed seeing the night sky after they decided to sleep in caves…

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