I’ll Follow the Sun


©2013 Edward C. Lunnon

Saturday 24 August 2013: 6 years 11 months on …

Advantage ED!

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We live in Ryan Street, Westview Extension, Port Elizabeth.

I bought the house in 1985 shortly after arriving in Port Elizabeth. It cost me R59 000 and included the curtains. We argued about whether the price included the asbestos post box!

I really couldn’t afford the house when I bought it – I had budgeted for a maximum of R50 000, but bugger it – in for a penny in for a pound, was my thought at the time!

I’m now arguing with the municipality as to whether the value of my house should really be R1,8 million rand! Maybe I should throw away that letter box and reduce the value!

The Lloyds lived just up the road from me – in Westview Drive, Westview, Port Elizabeth.

Grant and I coached rugby together at Grey in 1986/7. He had matriculated in 1983.

His brother Guy (aka Sarel!) was still at school and captained Dickie Ogilvie’s Third rugby team in 1986. Sarel is a member of the class of 1986. He is now a pilot with the national airline.

Dickie was a colleague of mine. I was often a non-paying boarder on the floor behind the brown couch at their home in Villiers Road (especially after nights out in the Bay)! He taught Biology and, besides the rugby prowess, had also played cricket for Eastern Province.

I left teaching in September 1986 for the business world. My mother passed away at age 55 in November of 1986. I returned to teaching in January 1987!

Alec Watermeyer, like me born in 1956 and Colleen Ogilvie’s brother who was farming Doorndraai near Aberdeen, passed away early in 1987.

Dickie and Colleen left teaching and Port Elizabeth in December 1987 to farm Doorndraai. I spent that Christmas with them and the extended Watermeyer/Murray on the farm.

In the Ogilvie display cabinet in the sunroom of Doorndraai are little porcelain men, some three centimetres high, in blue shirts and white shorts and numbers on their back from 1 to 15 – the mighty Third Team of 1986.

Even the faces are replicas of the original school boys who played in that team.  They were a gift from Sarel and the boys to their coach at the end of his last rugby season at Grey.

Just before Christmas 1987, Grant Lloyd went to the USA. I joined him in New York City on Boxing Day 1987 just after coming back from Christmas at Doorndraai.

We had Delta Travel passes. They enabled us to travel on Delta as standby passengers anywhere, anytime within the 48 contiguous (love that word!) states of the Union.

So we started off in The Big Apple and spent New Years eve and smoked weed on Times Square. I gave up smoking on the top of the World Trade centre on that evening. It was just too damn cold in the snow to keep my hands out of my pockets to hold a cigarette!

The World Trade Centre passed away on 9/11 of 2001 (all four of us Lunnons were on holiday in the USA in that September/ October of 2001!).

Grant and I planned our American tour as follows: each day we bought a copy of the USA Today. On the back page of that newspaper was a map of the USA detailing the weather forecast. We looked for the places with the good weather and flew there next.

We followed the sun!

I hope I can remember this correctly:

So from NYC we flew on to Houston, then New Orleans, then Orlando and Disney World and the Kennedy Space Centre, then Fort Lauderdale. There we rented a car and drove down to Key West, Florida.

From Miami we flew on via Dallas,Texas to Phoenix, Arizona, Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon. Then we went back to Flagstaff and Phoenix and then on to San Diego, California. We took the train south to Mexico.

Then we rented a car and drove north to the City of Angels, Los Angeles, and on to San Francisco. On the way we stopped at Pebble Beach to walk on the hallowed golf course (it was too expensive to play!)

From ‘Frisco we flew to Salt Lake City and on to Seattle. Then the long haul trip from west to east all the way back to Atlanta, Georgia.

It was there, after a month of travelling, that Grant and I parted our ways. Grant came back to South Africa, I went on to Washington DC and then back to Oklahoma City and Sulphur, where I had lived as an exchange student in 1975.

Before I returned home in April 1987 (I had to return to teaching in the second term), I did one last flight from OKC to Orlando to pick up a very large Mickey Mouse for my godson, Robbie Ogilvie.

Mickey sat in the chair next to me on my return trip from Dallas via Frankfurt, Nairobi and Johannesburg and on to Port Elizabeth. He now resides on Doorndraai  on the Plains of the Camdeboo in the vicinity of Aberdeen, Eastern Cape, South Africa.

I could write a book to add to the above seven paragraphs of our itinerary. It is but the skeleton of a trip of a lifetime that I shared with Grant Lloyd. I have a very thick album of photographs, USA 1987, that documents that tour of ours – the cities, the people, the backpackers’ inns, the hotels, the cars, the scenery …

We followed the sun!

It is no small wonder that I was shocked and saddened to hear yesterday that Grant passed away this week in Johannesburg, after having been involved in a motorcycle accident.

My thoughts and condolences are with his wife and family, his parents, his brother Guy and all his friends and colleagues that he touched during his all-too-short life.

RIP Grant.

I am certain that the tour will continue. Just follow the Son.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=VhNHJWS2O88

One day you’ll look to see I’ve gone
For tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun.
Some day you’ll know I was the one
But tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun.
And now the time has come
And so my love I must go.
And though I lose a friend,
In the end you will know, oooh.
One day you’ll find that I have gone
But tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun.
Yes, tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun.
And now the time has come
And so my love I must go.
And though I lose a friend,
In the end you will know, oooh.
One day you’ll find that I have gone
But tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun.

  

 

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