The Signal Steps I knew were a far cry from today … covered in alien trees …

They had all but been forgotten, perhaps known only by a few other crazies looking for an exhilarating run off the beaten track.

I discovered them by chance, when we lived in Simon’s Town.

Signal Steps 8

There they were, overgrown or rather buried by alien trees, covered in leaves, with an air of mystery and neglect.

Signal Steps Signal Steps 3


So I took off, with the dogs, on every step layer upon layer of leaves from those alien trees that almost burnt the Cape Peninsula down in the Summer Fires of 2000.

One day a bloody snake is going to get me, I would think … (yes, it finally did …)

And up and up we would run, the dogs loving and living every moment, me loving and dying every moment, my heart threatening to burst out of my chest.

Zig zag here, zig zag there, nothing like the feeling of invincibility!

Better than the golf course in Umkomaas, that massive rise to the 14th green, with the ocean at your back, and the grass beneath your feet … okay, seems mickey mouse now compared to Cape Peninsula trail runs … still back then it seemed like something …

Some talented golfers came out of Umkomaas, when they drove from that spot they must have felt like they would sink that mind-of-its-own hard little white ball into the sea …

Eventually you would be out of the aliens, Australian trees, like the Australians they had attitude, nothing is impossible, all can be achieved … when the Australian First World War ships docked in Cape Town they would practice fist fight warfare in the pubs and night streets.

They have an innocence about them, Australians, one to envy, that everything and anything is possible, that Great Whites can be patted on their heads and their tails will wag …

The damn Australian trees almost burnt our Cape Peninsula down … in the Summer Fires of 2000!

In Lakeside we could hardly breathe with the smoke off the mountains …

So at some point the dogs and me, unbitten by snakes, would emerge into leafless steps, and continue the upward rush … and at some point there we would be on top, me gasping, their tails wagging!

False Bay would stretch its ripples out before me, from below and away, to the mountains on the other side, and south and out into the Universe …


Copyright © 2015 G. Rigotti



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