From July 8 (when we began our trip) until the end of the month, we spent 2,301 ZAR on food, 2,959 ZAR on accommodations, and 120 ZAR on everything else. In total, we spent 5,380 ZAR (399 USD) in 24 days, at an average of 224 ZAR per day (112 ZAR, or 8 USD, per person).
By the time we drag ourselves from our cozy room and into the quiet streets of Loeriesfontein, it's well past noon. We're outside the Spar, the local grocery, filling our already-overstuffed panniers with over five days of food. The bikes sway under the weight of our rations. Accompanying the spaghetti and peanut butter and noodles and chips is water. Lots of it. Over sixteen pounds of water is strapped to my rear rack in a pair of bulging plastic bladders. Twenty-five additional pounds' worth are carried in a collection of eight bottles split between the two of us.
The days northward begin to blend together. The roads and the hills and the rest stops begin weaving into a tapestry of sights and smells, a patchwork of rough and smooth textures. There are challenging climbs and there are thrilling descents. There are tailwinds and many headwinds. There are many honks and waves of encouragement, plenty of quick encounters packing up outside the grocery.
I've said before that Cape Town is a terrible place for a bicycle. We do our best to head north, but our best doesn't get us very far. The oceanside promenade from Sea Point to the Waterfront disintegrates just east of the main tourist drag, and the first moments of our worldwide bike tour are interrupted by a large set of stairs calling it all to a halt.
It's daybreak, wherever we are.
Above the clouds, above the earth, above Africa. Down below lie vast open spaces. They're punctuated by thin meandering lines of tar or dirt or single-track. Up here there are no borders, few landmarks. I look out the window and gaze down at our coming months.