Arriving in Durban on Sunday morning we were greeted by the most rain they had seen in a while resulting in some newsworthy floods. We were staying in Addington right near the beach although not that that mattered much given the weather. We had some final group drinks together before half retreated to bed, in store for an early morning as they stayed on the tour to go through the garden route and arrive in Cape Town. The rest of us stayed up and the next morning I woke up early to have breakfast with them and say goodbye before a day of exploring Durban with those that remained with me.
Central Durban was busy and felt a bit worn out, crowded by street vendors selling fresh produce, piles of clothing and two entertaining the crowd with a snake, something I wish I knew the language for so that I could work out what they were actually doing with the thing. Skirting around those ones we made our way to the Victoria Street Market containing all sorts of souvenirs and more traditional items from the Indian culture that plays such a large role in central Durban. Taking advantage of this fact we looked around for a restaurant, finding New Little Gujarat where we paid AUD $1.40 for a Bunny chow which is a mix of curries served in a quarter or half loaf of bread. I opted for quarter and struggled my way through it, in love with the food but almost feeling too full to finish it off. I was so impressed with the price knowing I would have paid more had I have cooked myself lunch and knowing the quality was far better than what I would have produced.
Walking off our lunch we continued up to north Durban to look around City Hall and admire the beach from up there, just in time for the rain. Opting for an Uber to the hostel we headed back and I said goodbye as they continued on to the airport and I packed my bags to leave the next day, heading north to Umhlanga Beach with a nice Airbnb (treated by my parents) to spend my birthday in.
I caught my Uber in the morning saying goodbye to the city feels of Durban and saying hello to the suburban area I found myself in. I was staying in a very nice, very green area and was just a 10 minute walk away from town and a further 5 from the beach. I explored town for a bit but mainly indulged in the full size smart tv my Airbnb had with Netflix and all, while planning the next steps to my trip. I was so excited to use the washing machine and even went to the effort of washing the insoles of my shoes properly. I had them washed the week before but they weren’t given a chance to dry out properly resulting in a worse smell than when they started so knew it was necessary. I unpacked my bag and tried to sort out all my stuff taking full advantage of the bedroom, kitchen and living area I had all to myself, luxury I hadn’t had for quite some time.
Waking up on Wednesday I spent the morning in the king size bed complete with about 6 pillows, responding to messages and calling friends and family for my birthday. It felt weird being alone but I was happy (and surprised) to not actually feel lonely. I walked to town and treated myself – well, mum and dad did – to a massage followed by a walk on the beach and a Nutella waffle at a cafe, because why not? Walking back to the Airbnb I settled in for some Netflix and schnitzel from the freezer with salad (so gourmet I know) and enjoyed the evening to myself to celebrate turning 22.
I woke up the next day and packed up all my stuff, double checking the place to ensure I hadn’t left anything behind in the process of spreading myself out. I headed to Durban airport destined for Cape Town again where my next tour would be departing from.