Tag Archives: egyptian geese

Ducks and Jungle Gyms at the Dam Park in Strand (2017-01-28) Photo Gallery | Travel Attractions 28 FEB 2017

I love the fact that we have a proper duck pond as a municipal park here in Strand. The appropriately named Dam Park is situated right across from the Strand High School and offers a nice green space in the middle of Strand suburbia.

There is a playground to the side of the dam with an array of colourfully painted swings, a climbing frame, a roundabout, and a slide – you know, all the basics – as well as an old tractor and plinth mounted steam train.  (Which stinks at the moment thanks to some homeless person deciding that it would be great to use as a bathroom. Disgusting!)

We used to in the past visit the dam fairly often in order to feed the ducks (like literally everyone else in the area) and watch the locals occasionally try their hand at catching a dam fish or two, but seeing feeding ducks is now seen as not quite the correct thing to be doing (population and invasive species control reasons mainly), we drop by there far less than what we used to in the beginning.

The water levels of the dam itself on the day that we visited was surprisingly high – much higher than what I had anticipated (considering the drought conditions we are currently experiencing), but quite probably because of the one or two surprise days of rain we had experienced earlier in January.

With Chantelle stuck at work, the girls and I spent some time playing around (they even got me to climb to the top of the climbing frame with them), before we eventually got bored and convinced Chantelle to join us for some lunch at play time at the Gordon’s Bay Spur during her break.

It was a good plan.

Also, a map in case your kids bug you to go and look at some ducks.

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Ducks and Play Time at the Dam Park in Strand (2016-07-03) Photo Gallery 06 JUL 2016

We used to head out and feed the ducks at Dam Park in Strand (just opposite Strand High School) quite often when Jess was still a baby, but in recent years we’ve kind of slowed down on doing that for some or other reason. (Maybe the fact that it has become socially unacceptable to feed ducks bread has had something to do with it?)

dav

Anyway, Sunday saw Chantelle working, and so not wanting to waste the wonderful sunny Winter weather of the day (and also not really being in the mood for the last day of this year’s Winter Wonderland Festival – which we sadly completely missed out on by the way), I rounded up the girls and headed out towards Strand to the duck pond for a bit of a play and walkabout session.

dav

Obviously, the girls were overjoyed at the prospect, and pretty soon the two of them were darting between all the play equipment, making sure not to miss any in the process!

dav

The old, colourful tractor and train remains the biggest hits of course, a problem because Emily is way too small to clamber all over those by herself yet – which of course she simply HAS to do, seeing as big sister Jess is doing it!

sdr

We spent a good amount of time playing on all the equipment, and even Teddy got roped into the fun!

dav

We ended off the session with a leisurely stroll around the dam, watching the ducks and Egyptian geese, and of course taking selfies – because just like any other little girl, Jessica really seems to enjoy having her picture taken!

dav

Visiting the Dam Park here in Strand never really disappoints, and is always great if you are looking for something local to do that doesn’t require you to open your wallet. (Plus, it was really nice to see the dam back to its fuller level – the last time I was here it was halfway empty!)

We had some time to kill in the general area because we were meeting up with Chantelle, Retha and Miguel a little later at the mall in order to say goodbye and wish them well for their upcoming Camino de Santiago (St. James Path) pilgrimage adventure in Spain.

dav

Teddy wanted a milkshake, burger and chips, so we popped into McDonalds Waterstone for that, and after spending some time there, we headed up into the hills of Somerset West in search for more public park spaces.

sdr

As luck would have it, we stumbled across this one brilliant wooden jungle gym at the bottom of a sloped grass patch with perhaps the most magnificent view any play park is capable of having.

dav

Talk about a swing with a view! :)

Here are the rest of the photos that I happily snapped on what turned out to be a very pleasant, sunny Winter’s day out with my girls:

Losing Grip: World’s Worst Dad Moment #2 My Life 20 DEC 2012

Oh dear. This happened a couple of weeks ago, but boy does it easily slip into second spot on my world’s worst dad moments list. And to be fair, it should firmly feature as Ryan’s first world’s worst uncle moment too! (Just in case you’re wondering what was my first world’s worst dad moment, then undoubtedly it would have to have been that time when I accidentally spilled scalding hot water from my coffee mug over mini Jessica, back when she was still just a couple of months old – thank goodness nothing serious came out of that, other than me feeling like an extremely horrible and useless dad of course).

Anyway, after a fantastic Sunday afternoon spent with my family at Mom and Dad’s pad whilst Chantelle was out watching a theatre show with her family, I decided to cap the day off with a visit to the local duck pond. Jessica and I made the stop off for some bread, and through some surprise circumstances, ended up at Sonstraal Dam with the full roster of Mom, Dad, Ryan, Monty, Cheryl, Chantelle and Robert in attendance, where we then proceeded to feed the ducks and enjoy the fresh, albeit a little chilly, outdoor air.

After all the bread had been gobbled up by the hordes of ducks and Egyptian geese that had descended upon us, Ryan and I thought it would be a good idea to entertain Jessica by walking with her hand in hand and swinging her up into the air we went along. This was coming along swimmingly, and Jessica would giggle in glee as we swung her upwards into the sky after every count of 3, until that infamous and regrettable moment when both Ryan and I simultaneously lost grip on Jessica’s hands at the start of an upward swing, with the result being my daughter flying face first into the gravel before us.

Oh dear.

Blood, tears and a very angry wife, not to mention a deep feeling of shame.

So yes, definitely second in my probably yet to be finished list of World’s Worst Dad moments.

egyptian goose in water swimming

(The creche asked about the scab and the bump the next morning mind you. And my colleagues laughed and made fun of me. Sigh, not my best of moments as a daddy then. Luckily for me, Jessica has a particularly short memory, and quickly got back into the “swing” of things. Snigger. See what I did there?)

Photo Gallery: Strand Duck Pond Excursion (2012-01-22) My Life | Photo Gallery 22 JAN 2012

During her split on a working Saturday afternoon, Chantelle joined Jessie and me as we headed off for an epic duck and Egyptian geese feeding session over at the Strand duck pond, marking the first ever time that either Chantelle or Jessie had ever been there!

Photo Gallery: Feeding the Ducks at Sonstraal Dam (2012-01-01) My Life | Photo Gallery 01 JAN 2012

I’ve always loved heading over to Sonstraal Dam in Eversdal, armed with bread in hand and on a mission to feed the variety of ducks and geese that inhabit the dam. Now I get to pass on this tradition to my daughter, and seeing as this little outing makes for quite the nice pram stroll, I even invited both Mommy and Ouma to join us! ;)