1st December 2013 What a day it’s been. Yesterday we saw the rock carvings of Twyfelfontein, six thousand years old but you could identify each animal quite clearly, and again, almost had the place to ourselves. Judy almost fainted, once more, and I’m beginning to think she can’t take a temperature over 45 degrees!
We started off by going to see the “Living Museum” of the San people, but, no one there, so we strolled through the village huts and souvenir stalls, all stocked, and left. Next the Petrified Forest and then on to Khorixas where we were well and truly conned by the “Mayor” of this town, who sold us some trinkets at an exorbitant price. He was good, though. His technique was to casually start a chat with Judy, whilst I was at the garage, and within the conversation asked her name. Next he showed one of his carved balls and turned it around to reveal the name “Judy”. I came back and he had already carved the rest of the family. I fell into the trap and added the grand children. AUD$35.00 thank you. I did haggle down from $50.00 but somehow I don’t think I won the contest.
We had lunch at Outjo at the Etosha Hotel and were greeted at the door by a young Namibian man and woman who explained to us the buffet on offer. They were very charming and the meal was sumptuous, comprising ten or so courses. We explained that we only required a light lunch, upon which they offered us the light buffet. We chose this at AUD $8.00 each as opposed to the full buffet at AUD$17.00. We received a, huge, four-course meal and a demonstration of the Click language of the Bushmen by our host, whose father was a genuine “Bushman” who could speak the seven click language. His mother was from the town and could speak the four click language. He explained that he had grown up as a Bushman but had started school at the age of eleven and so, now, he can come to town and put on some western clothes to work at the hotel or go back home and wear his traditional clothing and become a bushman once again.
We arrived at the Etosha National park finding our campsite to be next to a waterhole, and so, we went down at dusk to see if any animals would appear, but, only a rhino and five lions. Oh well! Better luck tomorrow.
2nd December 2013 Travelled the length of Etosha National Park and saw various antelope, wildebeest, giraffe and zebra, but no lions. We will go down to the westernmost waterhole at Namutoni tonight and try our luck.
No luck. We must be hungry for lions……….or is it the other way round.
3rd December 2013 Motored on to Rundu in the far north of Namibia and the last stretch from Grootfontein was absolutely beautiful, green and village after rustic village all kept very clean with fire wood stacked neatly, goats and stalls by the side of the road with plenty of people milling about or strolling along. They all seem to be active, many still working the fields at 6pm.
This last leg of our Namibia section will take us through the Caprivi Strip starting at the Okavango and taking us through to Victoria Falls in Zambia.
4th December 2013
We took the “preferred tourist route” east. This was a good dirt road that took us through rural villages running parallel to the main road heading toward Livingstone. We stopped for the evening at Ngepi Camp, just out of Divundu, which had been recommended. The owner of this establishment has a good sense of humour and there are many quirky and funny signs all around the campsite. As an example there was one at the front gate, at the start of a dirt track, instructing drivers of 4×4’s to “Engage four wheel drive, select low range and lock all diffs- all other cars drive normally” and, at the bar “We accept cash”.
We arrived at about 4pm and found that the canoe tour would start shortly so we enrolled and were treated to 2 ½ hours of adventure on the Okavango. This included many hippo which at times got a little too close for comfort, even for our paddling guides, and crocs, literally six feet away (in the old money).
We ended the evening with dinner at the riverside restaurant, all very good.
5th December 2013
Judy is about to cook “Toad in the hole for breakfast”. I must have done something right. Eggs were off but! Had modified French toast instead.
5pm we are sitting in Namibia on the banks of the mighty Zambezi River, looking into Botswana, with a loose lion hanging around here somewhere. The drive into this camping area was a challenge, it’s the start of the rainy season, but on arrival it turned out to be a boutique, glamping resort with huge tents as taut as a snare drum, clear windows, timber panelling and silver service, Judy wishes she was there instead of our campsite, which, I might add does have running hot water. What more could a girl need?
By the way, I just heard the roar of the male lion across the river. I hope he’s the one they were talking about. Can they swim?
8pm we are sitting in our van with our Scott of the Antarctica roof tent up, the wind is howling and its raining but we are snug.