South Africa: Johannesburg for a Day and on to Kimberley Article at Skatepark of Tampa

South Africa: Johannesburg for a Day and on to Kimberley

Posted on Thursday, September 27, 2012 by Rob

By Rob Meronek

I can't believe all the things we've done in the last 40 or so hours. After landing in Johannesburg following 30+ hours of traveling, we've had an adventure that has included gambling, drinking, skating, wildlife, and friends from around the world. Here's a camera dump so far...
I'm not even sure how many were in this initial stop, but the bag pile needs a whole separate cab on its own.
A fresh sweatsuit, just Bedazzled, and just married. I wonder where the honeymoon is.
We got a nice, cheap hotel a mile from the Johannesburg airport with a shuttle and great service that accomodated the few extra friends we met up with along the way.
If you're ever on Johannesburg layover, this hotel is $103 a night for this room with a free shuttle from the airport. It's the One World Hotel.
The gate and security guard hut at the One World Hotel makes you feel like it's a sketchy neighborhood.
The entrance is looking classy.
We asked for a cab "downtown" and the driver said he wouldn't take us there. Afer we asked if it was because our gear would get stolen, he replied, "Because YOU might get stolen." Okay, so he brought us to the tourist spot. This Emperor's Palace place was basically America without fat people.
Yep, looking like Vegas and Ceasar's Palace here.
Since we're in America, we just went ahead and went to Hooters. Hooters? Yep, nearly 30 hours of traveling half way around the world and fresh off the plane we go to Hooters.
Schaefer isn't impressed with the wings.
Full frontal view of the Ceasar's Palace statue.
These signs are everywhere and make me feel like I'm the only one not packing.
I have no patience when playing these numbers games, so I push it all in. At least I got a photo before I lost this stack.
Pause for a foot fetish with Pat and I on some random mall prop.
We had time for a quick tourist mission around Johannesburg before heading to the airport. We're going to where kids go on field trips and get fancy book learning.
We're at the site where a student protest planted the seeds of freedom and democracy in South Africa.
Random artifacts for sale at the landmark history learning spot.
These kids were blown away by Porpe's jeans, beaming hard and taking cell phone photos of them. They were the Omar X Levi's Nike SB's.
This kid is flossing hard on the field trip.
Watch for an episode of SPoT Life from here in the Motherland soon. The Contest weekend will also be shown in theaters on October 2. We get home on that day and we're going straight to the big screen.
A public service announcement in the local store.
The local neighborhood car wash.
Okay, one last plane flight and we're there.
Alright, we're finally in Kimberley now and Porpe is straight to the gambling with Braydon.
The above ground pool at the hotel is not your average plastic Plant City variety.
Last year we didn't have time to go to this place outside of town to play with baby lions, but this year we made it a point to make time for it. These guys are six months old and already very powerful and playful at the same time.
They dive for whatever they can take, including Porpe's jewels.
This guy scratched me up good pulled out plenty of hair.
I think they always go for the neck, vampire style. Pat Stiener's about to get a Lakeland hickey.
HiDefJoe put the camera down for a bit.
These guys will just climb all over you with the same mannerisms as your average housecat.
Lion and Porpoise meet in the desert.
I got some good teeth marks and claw lines.
It won't be long before you can't get this close to him anymore without losing an arm or something.
There are other wild things at this place, too.
The Meerkats need a cage. They're too rowdy.
Down the road behind electric fences, we get to meet mom and pops. We saw them get naughty, then fight with other lions. Wow, okay, it's time to get to work at the Contest now.
A small sample of skater girls half way around the world from where you live. It's nice to see worldwide how skating injects a bit of style and makes you just a bit different from the normal cut, even these days of it being blown out mainstream.
Danilo! It's been a while since we've hung out. Years ago at Tampa Am he spoke only English from the McDonald's menu.
What a day it's been in Kimberley already. Airplanes, lions, homies, and now out at night to hit up some spots we saw while coming to the hotel today. Here's Porpe imagining his snap over this rough bump.
Does the snap match the imagination? Check HiDefJoe's footage on the next episode of SPoT Life.
Pat Stiener floated a nice backside 180 over that waffle ground.
When Jorge does a boneless, it's not looking too natural, kind of like when your dad tries to switch flip.
HiDefJoe put down the camera again, this time to kickflip the waffle bump. Porpe picked up the camera and shot this one.
We were lucky enough to have the Maloof driver, Happy, all to ourselves tonight. He took us to the skate spots, waited while we skated, and then took us on an amazing mission to find beer late night. Pat's protecting the stash.
Our first stop for beer was an amazing heavy metal parking lot hanging out in the streets in front of this place called Ghetto Den. Happy assured us it was safe and took us in for booze. This is the menu at the Ghetto Den.
We're back at the hotel now where we ran into Tim McFerran, the chief of MMC.
This is Happy. He made our night driving us around to skate spots, bar spots, and KFC.
After we cleaned out Happy's van, we were left with a pile of junk food garbage and empty bottles. What a first day in Kimberley. Damn! We'll have skateboarding coverage from now on.


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