So after relaxing and seeing about Diamonds, we went downtown to be a tourist. We spent that Thursday downtown viewing the Union Buildings and surrounding gardens. The Union Buildings themselves are, of course, gated off with high security as the Presidential Offices are located in these buildings. But, still, I personally was quite in awe just standing outside of the buildings. Now, this comes from a person who lived less than 10 miles from the White House in Washington DC, which, still leaves me in awe when I walk by, or the capital building, or any historical governmental building I see.
We took a nice walk around the garden terrace just outside of the Union Buildings. The view of Pretoria was phenomenal. The flora was gorgeous and colorful. Let us not forget, this is where the statue of Nelson Mandela (Mandiba) is located. The statue is a large as he was in person. Right in the center of the terrace garden, centered among the Union Buildings is this stunning example of a true man of the people, a man who fought for equality and rights for all.
That Friday, we ventured out to see more flora, the Pretoria Botanical Gardens. We walked around for about 90 minutes in awe of the flowers and trees and bushes that were that, that we do not normally see in the North Eastern USA. My friends little boy was running around enjoying the open spaces and it was adorable! We located the waterfall, walked up to the top of it, then, of course, took tons of pictures (because that is what tourists do).
The entire time, as I did for practically the entire 12 days in SA, I was fascinated and in awe of my surroundings, of where I was and what I was seeing. This trip, for me, was just another example of why I love to travel. To see things and experience things we don’t get to see and do normally.