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 Jasper House



It was in the year of '91 and the sky was full of sun
And Bernie Hill had been detailed to take the chuck wagon into the desert for a Posh Braai with the GM and his cohorts.
Bernie was a chef at the central kitchen at the time and chefs are really good people to send out into trackless wastes with ALL of the food.
Bernie turned south somewhere by Sendelings drift whilst everyone else went east, then he turned north to catch them up, then west then south, then east then north. Get the picture. A sort of a circle.
After a few hours he decided he was going to run out of fuel if he carried on. Fortunately he had enough food, alcohol and water onboard the chuck wagon for 48 people. So he pulled into a nearby donga and waited for passing traffic.
Unfortunately for the GM Bernie was his major source of supply. Later in the day the GM et al returned home, hungry and thirsty but otherwise in good spirits. (their words not mine)
Later the following day the chopper went out and found Bernie ( also in good spirits) and assisted him home with directions and an invite to the GMs house later in the evening.
Bernie insists to this day that it was only his innate knowledge of which type of alcohol to mix with which type of which particular dips and chips that enabled him to survive his harrowing ordeal in the Richtersveld.


(Submitted by Jeff Lane)

UPDATE: 21st October 2010

Hehehe! It took two years, But young Bernie Hill has submitted the correct and honest version of this tale.

Yes it was 1991 when I went missing in the Richtesveld.
So after reading the article I would like to give my story the real happenings.
It was 4am and we left Oranjemund in the dark when we left there were three vehicles in convoy. I followed the vehicles which was driven by the Geologist, Keith Whitelock in the second vehicle and myself at the back.
We drove through the desert over the mountain range deep into the Richtesveld to a small oasis.  where I started to erect a buffet lunch awaiting VIP visitors.  They were flown in by Choppers.  I refuelled the vehicle from gerry cans while Mr keith Whitelock was seeing the guests off in the choppers, the geologist told me that it was time for me to head back, when I asked which way, he said just follow the tracks in the sand because noone else has been out here, which I did for approximatley 3 hours, I found out later that Mr Keith Whitelock asked the geologist why he had sent me off as it was the first and only time I had been out there.  Unfortunately for me I stumbled on some old tracks and veered off to the right, when I realised I was getting short on fuel, I decided I should stop for the night, on board I had nothing but left over food and rubbish a few beers and one and a half bottle of water and some salted cheese buscuits, I had a very cold uncomfortable long night, as soon as the sun came up the next morning, I set off with my bottle of water to walk approx 3 mile to a mountain range which I started to climb.  At approx 11am I heard the chopper but I was higher than the chopper I was at the top of the hill, which landed at the vehicle some miles away and took off again, by the time I walked back to the vehicle mid afternoon a note had been left on the windscreen telling that they had gone to refuel and to stay with the vehicle when I got back.  Eventually the chopper returned and Mr Whitelock asked was I OK which I replied I HOPE I AM GETTING PAID FOR THIS.  His reply But of course and threw his arms around me and laughed.  My wife Brenda and I was invited that evening for a meal with the Openheimers and other guests.  And to this day I still receive lots of humour and banter from old friends. This is an acurate account of what happened it was not a comedy.
Regards to all
Bernard Hill (Bernie)