Thursday 4 October saw the annual Walking The Daisies initiative take place, bringing with it 120 festival-bound folk from Cape Town to Darling for a weekend of music and entertainment. Strutting into its fourth year, the Fruit & Veg City Walking the Daisies trek is an event where lasting friendships and memories are made while giving back to our planet and its people.
During the 2-day, 60 km trek, the group traversed, discovered, developed and promoted the unique biodiversity of the region, considered to be one of the highest priority conservation areas in the country.
The Cape Floral Kingdom is one of only six plant kingdoms across the globe and home to more than 9000 plant species of which 6200 are found nowhere else in the world. Thankfully, this unique piece of ecological heritage is being protected, promoted and sustainably developed by firm supporters of Walking The Daisies – the Dassenberg Coastal Catchment Partnership in collaboration with WWF-SA.
good action saves the day
As Walking The Daisies grows from strength to strength over the years, so does the impact and rate of active change achieved by the walkers and their campaign. This year, as part of our environmental action, we did a beach clean-up on the first day of the hike, in partnership with Ocean Minded. They make comfortable and stylish footwear out of recycled and sustainable materials. Ocean Minded have been organising beach clean-ups around the world since their beginning in 1996 and are continually fostering a culture of conservation.
It was encouraging to hear how many people commented on how the idea of picking up litter wherever they walk had become the norm for them when walking in nature.
After 30km of walking, a truck load of refuse bags filled with collected pollution from the beach and a whole bunch of newly made friends friends, the crew settled down at Silwerstroom campsite. We were treated to an evening of yoga, good food, relaxation and some musical entertainment, compliments of the 3 lovely ladies from Touchwood, namely Ruth de Freitas, Tessa and Julia Johnson.
And that was just day one.
Ancouraging pro-active attitudes
Rise and shine to a beautiful West Coast Friday, the crew did some stretches, applied the lotion to the skin, and set off towards Mamre, where we were to meet up with another Walking The Daisies affiliate – Greenpop, a social business that believes greening and sustainable living can be fun, engaging and accessible for all. They believe in inspiring a greener, more conscious, inclusive movement and do this through tree planting projects, green events, education, social media, volunteerism and encouraging people to start being pro-active when it comes to our environment.
On Friday’s leg of the Walk, a tree planting session took place at Mamre Primary School. The walkers, along with members of the community, worked together in digging and planting a variety of indigenous trees, including Rhus and Acacia as well as a few Olive trees which grow well in the area. After the warm welcome and tree planting sessions, the team of walkers and planters alike enjoyed a wonderful meal in the school’s hall boasting the best of a west-coast snoek braai.
After bidding Mamre a fond farewell, the walkers trudged off on the last leg of the walk, over the hill and (not so) far away, onwards to Rocking The Daisies. We trekked up the back of the mountain which serves as the backdrop to the festival. Tired legs were given the last burst of encouragement upon seeing the festival in full swing below us.
We tumbled down the other side of the hill to the sounds of Shortstraw and pitched up at the festival just in time to swing-step our grand arrival to the sounds of Machineri on the mainstage. The walkers congregated for one last time in the Pandadomium, extended our gracious thanks to Nathan and the triumphant work of Culture Talent and then set forth into a weekend of music and dancing… who said anything about tired legs?!
Words: Luca Vincenzo
Photography: Wesley Davis