BLOG: Things I learned while doing the Garden Route in Romania

You’ve just got to love South Africa in December.

It’s that time of year when most of us (besides those in retail and hospitality) become completely useless at work with the enticement of the summer holidays front of mind.

As a friend said to me the other day: “In South Africa December is not a month it’s a lifestyle.”



When that December feeling kicks in.


With January 2017 now in full swing we all need a kick up the backside as we try to make this economy of ours work.

But, let me first go back to the holidays…

In my first blog piece last year, “Things I learned in the Fair Cape”, I encouraged Benonians to get out of town and explore the natural beauty of the country.

And, contrary to my advice then, guess what I did over the festive season?

Yep, I did the Garden Route in Romania.

Indeed, good readers, I stayed right here in Benoni.

Do not fret though.

I will without a smidgen of a doubt head out to locations new this year and promise to bring back to you tales and lessons learned from my new experiences.

In fact, I am lining up (what I hope will be) an epic road trip with some buddies of mine in March (details of which will be shared in upcoming blogs).

Anyway, apart from being ridiculously lazy, these are some of the things I learned while chillin’ in B-Town these holidays.

1. Benoni and Gauteng is actually quite beautiful

With so many ’Nonians fleeing to the coastal towns and cities during the break, you do tend to forget what you are leaving behind right here at home.

The outflow of residents results in blissful, tranquil streets and barely any traffic.

I took a little run on an early and damp Christmas morning through the streets and was, as always, left impressed by the beauty of the suburbs in that morning twilight.

Before that, while lazily lying on my back under the canopy of trees in my back yard, I made sure to enjoy and embrace the pleasant vibes of this vibrant ecosystem right outside my door step.

While watching the ever conscientious male weaver bird expertly constructing his nest in a tree above my swimming pool with twigs and leaves from the garden as his Mrs glared on from a distance, awaiting her moment to give her judgement on his building skills (chicks, huh?), I realised that there really is so much more to life than staring at a computer screen.

This has encouraged me to explore more within Gauteng, too.

I also, in early January, visited Nkwe, not too far away from Benoni, in Tierpoort with some friends and launched myself from a cliff into the water below.

Top stuff!

A few days prior to that I made a spontaneous lone mission to the Pretoria National Botanical Garden for the very first time and indulged in the charm of this natural little haven of the Highveld.

Just going with the flow. #nature #metime #LG #pretoria #mychurch #soulsearch

A post shared by Logan Green (@logankgreen) on


It was there where I learned my next two lessons:

2. I wanna be a dassie, bru

When I die I would love to be reincarnated in rock hyrax form.

Yes, that’s a dassie to us South Africans.

While parking off in the botanical garden (again under a tree) I watched seven of the little critters foraging and doing their dassie thing.

Now, before you burst into fits of hysteric laughter for my strange revelation, hear me out.

According to Wikipedia “the rock hyrax spends approximately 95% of its time resting and basking in the sun”.

Who wouldn’t want that lifestyle?

Random fact for the day: Did you know that the closest living relatives to hyraxes are modern-day elephants?


Yes, elephants!

Not guinea pigs or hamsters as I had initially assumed.


Dassies are rad.

I met the most chilled out chaps ever in Pretoria.

I met the most chilled out chaps ever in Pretoria.


In keeping with the theme of nature and my experience in the botanical garden, my next lesson:

3. “Be a champion for your urban green spaces”

A story that kept me busy in 2016, and which is still keeping me busy, was the proposed development or sale of the Benoni Country Club by the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality.

A place that is as much a part of Benoni as mullets and lakes.

It was quite ironic then that while I was strolling through the grassland area of the garden I discovered this sign offering some sound advice.


I think that speaks for itself.

Be a champion!

Next lesson:

4. Benonians are the best jollers

Yoh, but Benonians can party with the best of ’em.

The parties that I attended on Old Year’s Eve were nothing short of epic and the post-jol babalas was certainly well worth it.

I attended an awesome event at Railways Cafe in Centurion a few weeks prior to that in support of my friends from the Benoni band Strait-Jackal.

The Benonians who were in attendance, as always, simply rocked the show.

Wherever the Jackals go, the Benonians follow.

And they jol!

Boy, do they jol!

If you do not know the Strait-Jackal boys check them out on Facebook and WATCH the video below:

5. Rather an intention than a resolution

Lastly, a message that resonated with yours truly right at the start of this year.

I hope that it inspires you, too.


Have a magical 2017!

With love,


* Please note that this is an opinion piece and that the views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of the Benoni City Times or Caxton Newspapers.

Check out some other blogs from this writer:

I’ve got the runs

Go, on be a sport

Allen’s talk hit for me six

LG’s A to Z of Benoni

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Logan Green

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