After 8 wonderful days in the Drakensberg Mountains this morning we’re on the move. We’re driving 150km to Dundee to visit South Africa’s most famous battlefield site, Rorkes Drift. We were born in the 60’s and our only point of reference is the film Zulu starring Michael Caine, Hollywood’s creative take on the Anglo Zulu War of 1879. Our adventure is moving into the heart of KwaZulu Natal province and we’re about to engage in an interactive history lesson that will help us to understand the events of the fateful days of late January 1829
We stop at Ladysmith en-route for some supplies and to post Brownie’s postcards. It’s a busy bustling town and the post office is vast. They find it highly amusing that Brownie wants to buy stamps to send postcards back to the UK. Goodness only knows when they’ll arrive. Ladysmith was founded in 1850 after the British annexed the area, it was named after the wife of Sir Harry Smith (then governor of Cape Colony). It was besieged by the Boers during the South African War from November 1899, until the end of February 1900. The 3,200 men who died in the defense and rescue of the town are commerated in the stained-glass windows and marble tablets of the All Saints Anglican Church. Ladysmith also has some excellent retail opportunities and I stock up on some clean t-shirts.
Our hotel room where we staying for two nights is enormous, the bed is huge and the sheets are of the whitest sofest cotton, a glorious contrast from our room at the backpackers hostel. It’s worth noting at this juncture that our accommodation going forward will I think you’ll notice dramatically improve up the luxury scale. We’ve got 2 nights at the Battlefields Lodge in Dundee and it’s lovely.
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