My hike up the St. Blaize Trail through the eyes of Adamastor, the legendary Greek god of the Cape of Storms.
Centuries ago the almighty Zeus turned me into the jagged ridge of the Cape peninsula as punishment for flirting with Nymph, his beloved Princess of the Wave. So in other words he punished me because he was jealous. I am now Adamastor, the god of the Cape of Storms and the guardian of the St. Blaize Trail.
Each day, I have to endure watching those barbaric humans stroll up and down my beautiful cliffsides. At one point the Khoi people lived among my colossal cliffs, reaping the nutritious benefits of my life-giving land. Decadent pearl-colored oysters and luscious fynbos are fruitful along these softly-carved beaches, contributing to the survival of these resourceful tribes during the wrath of the Ice Age. All that remains of them now is the trace of their cuisine, spewed in shell middens gleaming along my shores like white crowns of gratitude. But now humans overlook my jewels, mistaking them for mounds of cracked and broken eggshells. To add to my fury they mock me further by underestimating my floral kingdom not realizing that I contain more species than some of those South American jungles that they fawn over.
I was once the shiver that went up the harden sailors spine, their watery undertaker, the one to drag them down to Davy Jones locker but now I’m just the cliff that humans trample on for their morning run. Thanks to that doe-eyed opportunist, John II, they now call me the Cape of Good Hope, seeking safe passage through my waters to trade routes in the Orient, but there is nothing hopeful about my waters. Would you have hope while sailing through my pass, enormous waves crashing down around you upon the razor-sharp rocks protruding from my shoreside, my cliffs echoing with the sound of Poseidon’s angry ocean.
Oh that Poseidon! Constantly causing a ruckus, throwing temper tantrums, bellowing his roars throughout the sea. What a mess he makes. If Poseidon is having a bad day he thrashes around like a child causing sea foam to build up several feet high all over my coast. My shores end up looking like sweet little root beer floats, full of bubbling white foam instead ship-wrecking titans that they are.
Being the god of the Cape of Storms gives me the power to decide whether ships entering my coastline will arrive safely to shore or meet their horrible demise sinking into the despairing abyss of my dark waters. Over the years, I’ve enjoyed watching adventurous sailors squirm at the sight of my jagged rocks and tumultuous waves when entering my harbor.
But now these humans from across the land come to hike my pleasant trails, enjoying the refreshing ocean spray upon their face, the scent of the salty breeze, and devouring my scenic views with their unworthy eyes; never tiring of going up and down my hills. They could never appreciate how glorious I once was.
I don’t mind being all alone, watching the sun peek over my cliffs every day and melt into the horizon. I don’t mind being lulled to sleep every night by the hum of the ocean. I almost think it better to be alone with memories of my glorious past than to be an unappreciated tourist destination or a morning jog.
Now if only I could get rid of those pesky, furry little dassies, defecating in numbers all over my beautiful cliffs. Zeus sure found an interesting way to punish me for loving the wrong goddess.