We are staying in a swanky golf estate up on a hill with views for miles. In the distance at the bottom of the hill I see Knysna central. Far below the trucks rumble down the main road into town, but from the estate they look like small toys for my daughter to play with.
Beyond the town starts the lagoon. Flat from shelter, the water flows, bends and stretches like a snake flexing its muscles, eventually leading you out to sea through two mammoth heads of rock. Here the water hops and jumps to make a choppy swirl – the lagoon meets the vast seas. This all looks like some sort of ancient Oceanic gateway from another world. We are on Olympus. Poseidon will surely come from the depths because the great gate is open.
Fire has ravaged most of the valley below me, but it seemed to pick and choose its victims haphazardly. Anywhere that is within the golf estate has been saved from burning and thick green bush prevails amongst the carpeted fairways and manicured greens. Fairway watering systems surely helped. Elsewhere there are skeletons of houses and whole hillsides are black and naked from the scorching heat. People lost everything. Then there are neighbouring patches, houses, and hills untouched. Unfair.
My gaze is lifted. Baboons have come sauntering up the path eating the protea leaves and fighting with each other for bragging rights. They must love eating the green shoots that are coming up through the ashes.