About Me

I ramble about a number of things - but travel experiences, movies and music feature prominently. See my label cloud for a better idea. All comnments and opinions on this blog are my own, and do not in any way reflect the opinions/position of my employer (past/current/future).

30 June 2006

Biased News?

In the last week, much has been said about SABC's supposed biased news coverage. I am not defending the SABC, but honestly, when has news coverage ever been unbiased? Even in the day of the Internet, the persons who have the biggest influence in how people learn of events around the world are the news editors. They have the power to decide which story is "newsworthy" and how much exposure the story should get. Coupled with the reporter's own views on the subject, limited time and space, news is hardly unbiased.

The best example of how varied the same story can be, is to read/listen/view the same subject delivered by different news organisations, and even then it's difficult to draw the correct picture. So the SABC is not alone, but maybe they have just taken it a bit too far ...

26 June 2006

Cycling to Cape Point

Sometime last week, Hans-Peter, Reinhardt and I thought it would be a good idea to cycle all the way to Cape Point and back, so we decided on Sunday, with great weather prospects for the weekend. On Saturday night, Reinhardt chickened out, citing strong winds and a 50Km ride each way. HP and I decided to go anyway - and Reinhardt was (slightly) wrong on both counts.

The first half of the ride was quite good, at a very decent speed, without really needing to stop - though we did stop at St James and Glaincairn. Since HP had not come this way before, we even decided to stop at Boulders for a while. The ride upto the nature reserve was not too hard either, although we did stop a lot more. There was a slight breeze, but it was quite pleasant actually.

It all changed once we got inside the nature reserve - the wind speed really picked up, and made cycling uphill really really difficult. In fact, towards the very end, we ended up just walking up the last bit to the parking lot on top of Cape Point. We had lunch up at the restaurant, which was a bit over priced, but food wasn't too bad. After quite a long stop over (about 90 minutes), we cycled down to Cape of Good Hope, which was really living up to it's other name of Cape of Storms now.

Cycling back towards the entrance was interesting. Parts of the way, we did get some help with the wind on our backs, while other places, the crosswinds together with steepish hills and tired legs made it a lot tougher. There was an accident towards the entrance of the reserve (I think the driver of one of the vehicles was injured), and we were basically the only ones to get through (which drew lots of comments from the drivers who were blocked). Ironically, the wind died down once we were out of the reserve, and it was quite calm for our trip back.

We ended up only cycling to Simonstown and then catching a train. Firstly, it was already 17h30, and getting dark. Secondly we were too tired, and cycling another 30Km would have been quite difficult. So overall, we did about 90Km (hence a lot more than Reinhardt's prediction), in just under 6 hours of cycling. But the whole trip, with all the stops was about 9 hours - a whole day. It's by far the longest distance and time I have cycled in one go. It was a great day actually ... but I think we would have been able to cycle back if we didn't have to contend with the winds inside the reserve.