The rain had stopped this morning which was good news, however yesterday's blustery wind still remained. Saying goodbye to Shaun and Louie we set off towards Durban at just before 8am.
The climb out of Ballito soon had our muscles warmed up and we were on our way. With only about 45km to go we were confident that we would reach the city by 12pm where we would meet Debs' friends, Steph and Tim.
The journey along the M4 was easy, although the headwind and the traffic made it bit more challenging. It was nice to be riding along the coast through generally attractive scenery though.
As we neared the outskirts of Durban, the road became less fun as we had to negotiate several slip roads. These are never fun when you have cars trying to leave the main carriageway at 100km/h when we are only doing 20km/h at best. The fact that hardly anyone indicates and most people seem to wait to the last minute to cut across, means that it is not for the faint hearted! We are of course by now old hands at dealing with busy roads, so we arrived in Durban without incident.
Leaving the main road behind we rode through the city along the beach promenade. It was thanks to Shaun and Louie that we knew it existed. The route was certainly nicer than our original plan would have been. Passing along the promenade we got to have a look at Durban's beach front and it looks like it will be a nice place to spend a few days when we return.
Having arrived in good time, we wended our way slowly to the fisherman's wharf and Café Fish where we were to be met by Steph and Tim. Despite them running late, having been stuck in traffic, we didn't have to wait long. We were soon having a beer and a nice lunch in the restaurant. Steph was Debbie's tetrathlon coach and good friend from her pony club days. She has been living with her husband Tim in Lion's River for some time. It was great for Debs to catch up and after lunch we were on our way to their home.
Lion's River is a beautiful part of South Africa and their home couldn't be in a nicer setting. After getting settled into a lovely room, we wandered down into the fields to inspect the cows. Tim and Steph breed Murray Grey cows, which they have been introducing into South Africa.
Having had a stroll through the fields and a look at the river, we returned to the house and had a welcome beer on the verandah. A lovely dinner was followed by wine, more chatting and eventually a port or two. It has been a terrific day and just what Debs needed to help her get over her ordeal. A few days rest in lovely company will be extremely welcome.