Karoo Kuier - Visit to the Karoo
Friday, 22nd July 2011
On Friday the 22nd of July 2011 61 choristers boarded two Springbok Atlas buses for the first regional tour of the Eastern Cape since 2005. Our mission: To inject some warmth of the musical kind into the Karoo towns of Cradock and Graaff-Reinet, BUT we were unprepared for the warmth of the reception we were about to experience in both towns.
Upon our arrival in Cradock we were treated to some welcome tea and cake before warm-up rehearsals. We made full use of the wonderful accoustics of the church and the small audience was reluctant to go home at the end. We were treated to delicious soup and homemade breads before heading to bed with our kind hosts.
On Saturday morning we discovered that early morning Karoo air 'bites', but the clear skies promised a beautiful day and we were not disappointed. We dropped a few of the adults off in Graaff-Reinet before heading out to the Camdeboo National Park's Educational Centre.
Rosemary and Amy quickly had the children eating out of their hands and they did an admirable job of getting the kids tired out for the night ahead in the school hostel. Apart from some very original games that encouraged teamwork, the children also did a hike (of course some had to go astray) and by four o'clock most of them were ready for bed! This did not bode well for the 5 o'clock rehearsal, but Mr Van Zyl did not worry too much and sent us off for a well-deserved and delicious lamb potjie, prepared by Ds. Johan and his team.
Sunday morning arrived a bit overcast and chilly, but the congregation quickly warmed to the children's beautiful sounds and most stayed for the concert after the service.
The local SPAR and WIMPY received a welcome boost when one of the buses decided to act up (probably a conspiracy between Management and our bus drivers), so we left Graaff-Reinet a bit later than anticipated, but arrived home without any more mishaps.
A great time was had by all and maybe, just maybe, a regional tour will become an institution in our 'non-touring' years!
See the Tour section of our gallery for more photographic evidence!