Just after ‘new years’ this year, we were staying in a farm cottage in the midlands. It so happens that we have permission to fish the dam on the neighbouring farm. And so, most days that we were there, we drove across there at some point to throw a line.
We were catching fish every day. Nothing spectacular. Just rainbows of a pound or two, but all very pleasant.
On the 6th January, we ventured out later than usual, because of stormy weather. In fact my journal records that it stormed at lunch time, after a hot morning, and then again at 4 pm. As soon as that downpour was over, the entire family piled onto the back of the bakkie, and we slithered off to the dam. The roads were very slippery indeed, which slowed us down, and we arrived at the dam with very little daylight left.
I had just an hour’s fishing. As we arrived at the dam, fish were rising, and I landed one on a black DDD (a secret weapon, which Nigel Dennis introduced me to years ago). Then the wind got up, and the fish stopped rising abruptly, and no more were to be had. While I was fishing, the family went for a stroll to take pictures. The sun was setting, but lighting up the black clouds off to the East.
We could see a long way to the East, since the dam in question sits close to the edge of a high escarpment. Way off in the distance, roughly where home is, was as black as evil, and one could just make out the faint roar of a wild storm happening in that direction.
By the next day, news came through from friends and family of one of the most destructive storms in living memory.
(Photos supplied by my eldest son, Luke. Shutteredafrica.com)