It's a long way to drive...and then: A tiny tea garden high in the mountains! The first pass was built in the nineteenth century, using only picks and shovels, around twenty men and some oxen. It has been inproved in the 1950's by Versveld, a local entrepeneur and eccentric. Today we are thirsty and interested in another local "eccentric", the owner of this very distant tea garden!
You reach it after quite a long drive to reach the summit. Then suddenly the bright yellow welcoming sign is there! A red hand painted arrow points upwards into a treed lane. After turning in, motorists are requested to hoot three times! Once you find the five or so tables under the trees, it is best to reach for your newspaper and wait. Suddenly Henny Visser is there, announcing slightly out of breath that her home sits lower down and she was tending the Sweet Potato Cake baking in the oven. With great care and speed she covers ALL the tables, not just one, with checkered cloths. A moment later three little blackboard menus hang suspended between two bluegum trees.
Soon we are enjoying a light lunch, fresh cakes and coffee, chat like old friends with Henny and admire the hills planted with lavender. We also hear of a beloved Afrikaans author, the late George Weideman who had often spent time there in winter, writing by the small inside fireplace. On this lovely summer's day we can only wonder what winter would be like up here! On leaving, we are loaded with aloe plants, applesauce and lavender oil from the farm, which are sold in the tiny shop on the premises.