Saturday, April 12, 2014

So proud of Port Elizabeth

There is nothing like an out of town visitor to remind you of how lucky you are to live in our area! I love to show off my hometown and all that this region has to offer and each time my visitors are blown away -  then I am too! Having said that, it's not difficult to impress visitors who come here with little or no expectations and that makes me wonder what our Public Relations Officers and Tourism officials are doing.
I was delighted over the last three weeks to show V around. He had driven though PE on occasions on route to Cape Town but it was never a destination of choice till I became the main attraction! Anyone driving by on the N2 can be forgiven for believing that we are an industrial, blue collar, coastal ghetto but when you actually come off the freeway and explore and appreciate the beauty of our city there can be no doubt that we are unique.

Where else can you spend the morning on the beach, lunch in a gracious and historical Central, drive through scenic countryside to the mountains for afternoon tea and then have sundowner cocktails with a sea view and enjoy a musical fountain show after a 5* dinner? We have it ALL.

We also enjoyed a beautiful if not, bumpy ride through the Baviaanskloof - majestic mountains, clear water cutting over the road in shallow streams with a little game viewing thrown in. My only gripe here is that Rooihoek is no longer open to day visitors and I wanted to show off the inland river beach nestled between the mountains.

A weekend away at Cape St Francis was a great opportunity to showcase the beautiful homes on the canals at St Francis Bay and the relaxed lifestyle, the busy fishing industry of Port St Francis and then the natural beauty of Cape St Francis beach where families and their pets relaxed in the late summer sunshine.

We went for the day to Storms River Mouth and watched the waves whip against the cliffs as we walked to the suspension bridge and we envied the campers and caravaners who would fall asleep that night with the roaring sea in their ears and breakfast with the dassies.

V was also impressed by the cleanliness of our city, the pristine beaches,  our beautiful old buildings in Richmond Hill and Central and the nightlife buzzing on the pavements. The friendliness of Port Elizabethans and the variety of restaurants and quality of food to be enjoyed. The Iron man Event happened during his stay and it was SO well run - what a success.

I was in luck too as Centre Stage had a production on at the Boardwalk so we were able to enjoy a show full of our local talent and then enjoy coffee as the musical fountains worked their charm.

I had to work while in PE but what a privilege to be dropped off at the new NMMU Business School and the state of the art facilities that it offers.

Yes - I can honestly say that I was very proud of my city over the last two weeks and of our surrounds. We have the habit of moaning here - we have NOTHING to moan about. Open you eyes and look around you and count you blessings that you live here!
There is no place like it on earth!

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