Port Elizabeth Road Trip Part I

What's New — By thethirdpeacock on June 28, 2010 at 4:59 pm

It could be Argentina vs South Africa Boys, how cool would that be! – Tom Corcoran (of the excellent excellent South Afrikan travel agency toescapeto.com

The second part of my World Cup experience consisted of a road trip to Port Elizabeth with 4 guys I’d never met and 1 I had, for 5 days of surfing, golf and football football football. It was ace.

PE is 8 hours good driving from PE so we set off around 4ish on Tuesday and after an hour or so of driving pulled over to watch the end of the Bafana Bafana game (a well deserved victory over the pathetic French). After losing a wedge of cash fairly quickly at the blackjack table, we continued on to our overnight venue in Wildernis.

Which was great, we had our own Rotunda, unfortunately this venue held up the strange South Afrikan denial that it ever gets cold. And it was freezing. It’s winter! Even with the house literally next to the place burning to the ground as we slept. Youth Hostel. Buy some blankets!

The next day we quickly arrived at our place of rest. Quite possibly the best Bed and Breakfast ever conceived.

34 Lovemore Crescent, St Francais Bay, South Africa. You will never ever regret it if you take my advice and go to stay with lovely Monica and her dedicated staff of amazing Breakfast producing wonder women.

Shortly after arriving we were collected by our driver in his Hyundai van. These were everywhere in South Afrika performing all manner of duties from group taxi to goat delivery.

Boys on tour 2010

We took the hour long drive into PE and were soon immersed in England fans. They were everywhere on PEs waterfront, which unfortunately turned out to be the only place to drink and eat in PE. Songs were sung, calamari and ships were devoured, nervous looking South Afrikan TV reporters were swamped by ‘Lads on Tour 2010’.

We had a few halves and then the van took us back to the game. Everyone was in high spirits, as a better performance was expected (and required) to keep England in the tournament.

We found the girls in hospitality were more than happy for us to sit in the expensive seats, as long as we partied with them.

And well, frankly, they did enough. The 1- 0 win wasn’t beautiful by any means, but Jermaine Defoe took his goal nicely, and it meant we were through. To face the old enemy Germany.

We headed back down to the waterfront after the game and had a great time. Everywhere was rammed full of England fans trying to satisfy their thirst and hunger.

Fortunately we didn’t let this distract us from having fun. First, we rushed the stage at a mini concert in the casino plaza area. Initially it felt like the guards were going to try and move us on, but once they’d seen how badly we were dancing and how much the crowd was enjoying the show, they started egging us on.

Even Dave interrupting the child prodigies performance of the Jackson5s I want you back brought a smile from the director, although I fear the kids music career may have been derailed by an anglo-algerian-koreo-scando lion before it had begun.

Moving on from this, we found sanctity in the lobby area of the fanciest Fish restaurant in Morgan Freeman Bay. There they had set up two opposing stands infront of a plasma screen and we cheered and sang our hearts out as Germany beat Ghana.

Our Stand (the south) were most creative with our chants including;

Gha-nan-nan-nana-na-na-na (to the tune of the Beatles Hey Jude)

Waitress give us a wave, waitress waitress give us a wave (particularly useful when trying to get served), and;

Walter is our driver, Walter is our driver, nah nah nah nah (Walter wasn’t our driver, but he was somebody’s driver)

'South stand in reception of posh fish restuarant, what's the scoe? South Stand South Stand what's the score?'

We eventually got a table at the restaurant and enjoyed a variety of great fish dishes. Apart from Tom. We ate his Sushi main as a starter. Sorry Tom. The restaurant was called 34degrees FYI FISHY.

Saki (van driver) collected us around 11 o’clock, which is just as well because we had almost crossed the point from being merry to being idiots. Well we had just crossed it. I had to pull Paul down from the tree he was climbing before the army of parking attendants he was annoying were joined by members of the ‘World Cup Special Forces’.

All in all the atmosphere was electric, and there was no real trouble.

Sadly what could’ve been South Africa Argentina for our game on Saturday turned out to be Paraguay vs South Korea. But more on that later.