Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Facing my Fear....

Thank you Allie, for the inspiration to blog about my fear of heights. You can go and read all about her experience.

After zipping from tree-to-tree and not feeling any fear about the heights, I had to come to the conclusion that my fear is “the fear of the Blaauwkranz pass”. You see, when I was 17 (many, many years ago) my brother and I drove from Port Elizabeth to visit our parents in Cape Town. We entered the Blaauwkranz pass at about 8 o'clock in the morning and I was really excited because it was my first trip to Cape Town and I have never driven this road before. Soon after we entered the pass, the car had a tyre blow-out and my brother lost control of the vehicle. If you ever drive through the is where there is a road marking that says 110km to Humansdorp. I had the silly thought at the time….wondering how on earth we are going to get the car back on the road. That was….before we started rolling. The vegetation was thick and although the drop is 140 metres straight down...we actually rolled. I will never forget the sight of it, it felt like slow motion…and there was a circle of light with vegetation all around. It was a terrifying experience... somehow I made peace that we will not survive. The car landed on its roof at the bottom of the gorge. My next silly thought was that the car would burst into flames…dramatically like in the movies.

It did not…the river was in flood and we began to sink. Later we would find out that we were fortunate…the car fell on to a large rock that stopped us from sinking to the bottom. We crawled through the window on the passenger side. We could hear vehicles driving way above us, but nobody saw the accident happen. (Where and when do you imagine they would have started looking for us if we were too seriously injured to get to the road?) We walked along the river bank until we found a place that was not to steep, then we climbed to the top and people stopped to help us. We were driven to the Humansdorp hospital…but apart from cuts and bruises we had no serious injuries and we were released when family came to fetch us.

My brother went back to the scene of the accident with the police to retrieve our possessions…it was found that somebody stopped after we were picked up and they stole everything they could lay their hands on. Since this experience I always end up in a miserable, pathetic, whimpering idiot when we drive through this particular pass. I think it must be because we came so close to losing our lives. I was so grateful when the Tollroad opened and I no longer had to face the torture of this drive. Needless to say, my DH does not understand these very deep feelings of mine.

When we returned home on Saturday we just HAD to take the scenic route again. No matter that there was a huge sign that said "NO ENTRY/ROAD CLOSED". In this first photo you can see the reason for the sign. Badly crumbling road.

Okay the route is you can see. Beautiful vegetation.
Beautiful ferns.

More badly crumbling road....fortunately for me, other people took the sign seriously so we had the road to ourselves.

Proof that I was there.

The bridge at the bottom of the gorge...this is usually when I have a sigh of relief because we are half way from getting through the pass.

You can see that there is no barrier that will stop you from falling.

This is the exact spot where we went down. You can see the ribbon of river at the bottom of the gorge. It is like walking over my own grave.

The answer to whether I conquered my fear is....NO! Scared 1

I received this very sweet blog award from Desire.

I am so glad that my blog makes some people smile. But I have noticed that this award has done its rounds... therefore if I follow your sure that you make me smile, and please feel free to take this award for yourselves.


  1. oh my goodness!! What a traumatic experience! That is amazing you were able to go back! I don't think I could ever do that! I couldn't even imagine, you are very brave! Your pictures are amazing!

  2. Awesome story though. Don't know if I would still love Ratanga rides having experienced that either. Glad that you're ok and even more able to face it and take photos.
    He is faithful and faith overcomes fear ~ but you know that.

  3. I cannot believe DH took you through there in spite of the notice saying the road was closed!

    What IS it with guys - even wonderful guys like ours :-) ?!

    I am breathless with admiration for you - that
    a) you did it
    b) you actually kept it together enough to take pix

    (You will have noted that there were NO pix in my blog and that alone tells a story!)

    10 out of 10 from me for courage and faith.
    You go, girl!

  4. What an unbelievable story. What courage you have. And what a remarkable wife you are! I would totally want to bliksem my man if he made me drive that again. Wow wow wow.

    By the way you can see lovely vegetation and even FERNS at most good nurseries these days. NO need to go RISKING YOUR LIFE. LOL

  5. Allie...the taking of pics was sort of a distraction! I can guarantee you that he will want to take the scenic ride again when we are down there. I drew the line when he wanted to jump in the air and make me take a picture of him hanging in limbo...the though had me charging for the car.

    Mel...I would have loved to bli***em him...but at least this time we drove through hugging the mountain...nobody else on the road. Hopefully (see rolling eyes) he will get over this scenic route soon.

  6. Lynette, you are indeed a very special person. I hope your husband realises this.

    Thank you for sharing this story with us. For having the faith and courage to actually drive through there, and then relive the story again by telling us.

    And CONGRATS on being a granny again! Hope Lache is well. ANd pics asap please!

  7. Hi Lynette. Ek het geweet van jou vrees vir hoogtes en nou weet ek definitief dat jy mag maar hoogtevrees he. Dis 'n verskriklike verhaal wat jy hier met ons deel, maar reeds al daardie jare gelede was Sy beskermde hand uitgestrek oor julle.

    Op 'n ander noot ... baie geluk met die geboorte van jul jongste kleinkind, Dewan vanoggend. Geniet hom.

    Mooi bly.

  8. Just looking at the photos brings back bad memories for me! But mine is because of certain members of the family driving through there at top speed! Even my hubby doesn't understand the fear I have of passes, but I would kick his backside if I had had the same experience as you!

  9. Wow - that is quite a story. I don't know how you'd be able to get over something like that. It sounds like you had a guardian angel that day for sure!

  10. That is a really scary story...what a chilling tale! I don't see why you have to overcome your fear. After all, it is only normal, if it had happened to me I would never go back there. I had a couple of bad incidents in Zim before we left & I will never visit those particular spots again because I know it would all come flooding back & surely that wouldn't be healthy?!


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