GAME DATE AND TIME:
Saturday, September 1st, 5:00 PM PST PLAYERS NEEDED:
2 to 5 BACKGROUND:
It is 1901. The British Empire's war with the South African Republic and the Orange Free State drags on into its third year, outliving Queen Victoria herself. Following a string of humiliating defeats at the hands of the surprisingly hardy Boer kommandos,
King Edward's forces have broken the ability of the plucky Dutch farmers to challenge them in open battle. The Afrikaners
have scattered to the winds, launching guerilla raids on British forces, who struggle to defend their supply lines across miles and miles of open veldt.
In response, Lord Kitchener revises his tactics. Rather than marching to battle in line and column, British mounted infantry pursue the guerillas in mobile engagements of fire and maneuver. They divide the veldt with blockhouses and barbed wire, limiting the enemy's freedom of movement and better protecting their fragile rail lines and roads. More controversially, Imperial soldiers deny the Boer fighters their ability to survive off the local population, by burning farms, salting fields, poisoning wells, and interning tens of thousands of civilians in camps. BRIEFING:
The rail link to Nelspruit, in Eastern Transvaal, has been repaired. Lord Kitchener and his staff have declared that the region East of the railhead is to be cleared of civilians, as part of a larger drive to snare notorious guerilla Louis Botha.
You are soldiers of the Imperial Yeomanry, mounted infantry in the service of the British Empire and His Majesty King Edward VII. Your squadron (the cavalry equivalent of a company) have been given the task. You have a map and a list of farmsteads to clear. Torch the buildings, kill the animals, poison the wells, march the civilians back to the rail depot for transport. Get to it. NOTE:
This adventure is set in South Africa in the year 1901, during the Boer War. You need to create a soldier in the Imperial Yeomanry to play in it. Unless you want to make a dramatically different character concept, use this template here
to do so.
Reply in this thread if you would like to play. ROSTER
Strava link - https://www.strava.com/activities/1260163173
Youtube link - https://youtu.be/essAApHFEdo
My wife and I ran our second Kaapsehoop marathon this past weekend. It’s run mostly downhill from a tiny town called Kaapsehoop to Nelspruit in South Africa.
South African marathon runners are obsessed with the Comrades Marathon and most (including myself) use Kaapsehoop as an early qualifier because it’s mostly downhill and being in November it gives us a qualifier in the bag before the ‘qualifying season’ from Jan to April next year.
Despite dropping about 1000m in altitude from start to finish, the marathon can be brutal. Fast, but jarring on the legs, causing many to spectacularly hit the wall in the later stages of the race.
The goal was a sub 4 for myself and a (relatively) easy finish for my wife. Last year was her first marathon at Kaapsehoop and we ran it together in a 5H25.
What I love about this race is that it has a population of wild horses living in the forests around the town. They run alongside and between the crowd of runners at the start of the race. I love living in South Africa at moments like this. Here is a video from last year we took of the horses narrowly missing a guy having a toilet break against a tree https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4C4S1QdADb0
The race started well, with us being on one of the first buses, we lined up close to the start. The great thing about being close to the start is obviously, less of a bottleneck across the line, but this means that it’s also very tempting to be caught up being pulled along by the masses at a pace quicker than planned.
Most marathons, I find, follow the same itinerary. The start and first 21km fly by, the following 10km become a little uncomfortable and then at 32km it all falls apart and I’m left crawling on the tar to the end. I upped my training this year and was positive this wouldn’t happen again.
I said goodbye to my wife, and sister who joined us just before the gun, and ran at an easy pace through the forest plantation service road for the first 8km. I remember thinking as the herd of horses ran by, “I wonder what a group of horses is actually called. I think it’s herd, but it doesn’t sound quite right”.
After 8km the race turns back onto the main road and plummets downhill at a gradient of 10 or 11 percent. Trying to hold back is uncomfortable, running at any speed is actually uncomfortable. I tried my best to not be too eager to get to the bottom, but think I was running a bit too quickly as I saw a 4min55 km pop up on the Forerunner, when I had planned for 5min 20’s
I do a lot of research before every race and I had analysed every bend and camber of the road before the race. I knew this was too quick and hoped it would not come back to hurt me later.
My best marathon time was a 04H34, so a sub 4 was an ambitious goal for myself. I thought, “Well it’s all downhill. It’s easy”. What a naive thought.
Up to about 32km in, things were on track. The scenery flew by, the horses long behind us and the smell of boerewors at the finishing stadium overtaking all my thoughts, I had the 4 hours in the bag.
Then the first misfire happened. A pee I was holding since 10km became more urgent and I quickly stopped to relieve myself behind a bush. Trying to run again was torture. The quads said an adamant No.
I pushed through, but the following kilometer or two was slower than I was previously running. This put me a minute behind my target time. I tried with all that I had to up the pace. Nothing was working, not even two bites of my salted dates tucked into my running belt.
I’m coming to the realisation that hitting the wall in a marathon is inevitable for me. It didn’t quite happen at 32km this time, but at an uphill section just before the end, at 39km. And it was epic.
My constant 05min40’s had slowed to over 6mins. By 39km it was over 9min. I walked and ran as best as I could, watching a 70-year-old, who I passed early on, trot past me with a short, “C’mon we’re almost there!”.
Cresting the hill, the boost of seeing Mbombela stadium helped me limp home with two 7min kilometers.
I finished happy with my 04H09, 25 minutes under my previous PB, but slightly disappointed to miss out on a sub 4.
I found out later that my wife and sister ran together for most of the way. Parting ways with about 10km to go. Charleen, my wife coming in just over 5 hours and my sister around a 5H18.
This race has to be on every South African marathon runner’s bucket list. The water stations are incredible with ice cold water, coke and even doughnuts at some. Running with the horses is an amazing experience. If South Africans all took up running and did this race we would live in a much happier society that has a greater respect for nature.
Oh and I had to google this, a ‘herd’ of horses is a herd if they’re wild, but a ‘team’ if they’re domesticated.