In each country we visit, the first phrases I try to learn are a greeting, and how to say thank you. Afrikaans, the language of South Africa, has the easiest “thank you” for me to remember. Everywhere we went we told people to “buy a donkey”, because that’s how you say “thank you” in Afrikaans!

Here we visited friends that serve one of the poorest communities in the area. They serve food and help lead the church there, which closed down during the pandemic. So while we visited we helped get the church building ready to reopen.

We also got to visit a fantastic museum honoring the Khoisan people, who are aborigine bushmen, where we watched videos of them telling traditional stories in their fascinating language. Having studied linguistics, Eric and I especially enjoyed hearing this language which uses 5 different clicks as some of its consonant sounds. Virtually all of the world’s click languages are found in Africa. “Click” on this link to hear a sampling of a click language.

Gianna is drinking a delicious rooibos latte, which she and I drank often here. Rooibos is ubiquitous in cafes and restaurants, and it’s prized for its medicinal qualities as well. According to, “There is only one place in the world where rooibos grows wild or can be cultivated—the Cederberg region, a rugged mountainous area two hours northeast of Cape Town, which has the climate, soil, and conditions conducive to the healthy growth of the red bush.” Cederberg is just a couple hours drive east of where we stayed in Saldanha.

We saw a flamboyance of flamingos at one of the beaches and the kids collected their feathers as they walked along the water. At another beach, we found an abandoned baby sea lion. We watched it for a while making sure it wasn’t injured or sick. It eventually made its way back into the water, but it was sad to know that it’s hopes of survival were exceedingly low without its mother. We also saw wild zebras and ostriches while driving down the roads.

Kids in the village with their containers to get lunch.
Lining up for lunch.
Gianna and Allison with the ladies that make and serve lunch.
Jared helping to clean chairs and pews to put in the church building.
The bean porridge served to the kids is tasty and nourishing.
Gianna and Jessica preparing awnings to put up on the church building.
Putting up the awning proved to be much more complicated than they anticipated. Extra support was needed inside first.
The church building with the finished awnings.
Jessica and Allison crocheted and knitted hats and scarves for the children in the village.
Children playing in the road in the village.
We went to breakfast with our South African friends at a Homestyle farmhouse for some authentic local food. It was winter there and the weather was cold, so standing by the wood stove felt wonderful!
Sign outside the restaurant highlighting some of the meals available here (written in Afrikaans)
One of the many beautiful beaches, featuring a special type of sandstone in the Saldanha area. That’s Jessica standing on top of the rock.
Gianna, Jared, Jessica and our local friend Karen looking for shells on the beach.
Eating lunch at a beautiful restaurant by the sea.
This was a breakfast porridge one morning at our hotel.
An eclectic gift shop in Paternoster village featured some lovely sitting areas.
Drawing in the sand under a majestic sky.
Fun on the beach!
The village of Paternoster is characterized by these white houses.
Shark bay is a very large shallow bay, where when the tide is low, a very large sandbar is exposed in the middle.
Sheep and flamingos spotted while driving down the road.
We saw many old boats used as gardens.
Shark Bay.
Zebras grazing near the roadside.


  1. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a picture with both sheep and flamingos before – cool! I love this description of your time in South Africa – sounds very rich!

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