Port St John’s – South Africa

Homeward Bound

I suspect legends have been made in Port St John’s (PSJ) but far more have fallen. As one unassuming highly intelligent gentleman (RIP) who resided there once said to me, “Andrew, whatever riches you bring with you to Port St John’s, will not leave with you when you go”. This same chap, from what I could gauge during my chats with him, lived a full, interesting but hard life that was cut somewhat short.

On the morning that I took this photo, I woke at 04:00 and left Umtata at 04:30 to head down the hill into PSJ. I arrived at around 06:00.

I can count on one hand the locations I have shot where I felt a strong sense of gratitude and satisfaction during and after the shoot. This feeling arose this same morning high on the mountaintop some 300 metres above and overlooking Cremorne Estate, Spotted Grunter, Claude’s Rest, Port St John’s River Lodge and the mighty Umzimvubu River seen down below.

PSJ is a really interesting little town full of many surprises but perhaps only if you are an interesting person. Great fishing and hiking opportunities also await one (plus crayfish thermidors and sun downers at Delicious Monster Restaurant – 2nd beach).

If you’re not adventurous and consider yourself above us common folk then rather head straight to Dubai via business class and mix it up with Prince Dollar of Obnoxia.

On the other hand, if you want to savour the fresh largely unspoilt Wild Coast, throw your watch away, leave your shoes at home, drop out the rat race, stop putting up the hard show, meet the locals, sip on beers with backpackers and maybe even meet the Mad Hatter in person, then drive 4.5 hours there from Durban on some challenging roads; it will be well worth it!

The photo gets its name from the road leading over the bridge and into the background: 4.5 hours to Durban, homeward bound from PSJ.

Canon 6D, 17-40mm, F16, 1/8 second

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