We at the News are also thrilled to announce that a box of yellowing scraps of paper which was handed to us, has turned out to be the journal of Lady Piltdown, wife of Lord Henry Piltdown, one of the earliest pioneers of the Package Tour holiday. They joined up with the first Tour operators in 1835 going from Cape Town to Graaf Reniet, and then onwards in something that would come to be known as The Great Trek. Apparantly this journal was discovered in the foundations of a local farmhouse undergoing renovations, but the exact address has been withheld to avoid unnessecary publicity for the owners of the farmhouse, who wish to retain their privacy in what will no doubt come to be a major international heritage site.
An excerpt:
“Many of our fellow travellors exhibit signs of a fundamental lack of understanding of the finer points of etiquette. Only last night Harold was trying to place the spittoon within spitting distance of one of our new friends (whose tobacco chewing would not be half so problematic if he would only do it with his mouth closed). Every time he placed it where Johannes had just released a stream of brown fluid, and the man would then aim his next eruption to the other side of the table from the recepticle. After Henry had moved the object no less than five times, our esteemed colleague leaned over and growled in heavily accented English “Listen my friend, if you move that thing one more time I swear I will spit in it…”
Later in the comfort of our own wagon Henry confided his sense of elation at having finally been called ‘my friend’ by this gruff fellow…”

October 2012