Almost ready to go…The final expenses for our time in South Africa…Many visitors came to say goodbye!…

Yesterday afternoon, two Kudus came to call.  Standing by the braai, he nibbled on the leaves of a tree.

All we have left to do is to pack the clothing we’re wearing now and close our bags. Our boarding passes are printed. 

Such a handsome guy.
Then there were two after we’d placed a few of our dwindling pellets on the stone.

The flight from Mpumalanga/Nelspruit to Johannesburg, South Africa has tighter luggage restrictions than our remaining flights but, we are close to complying for all of the flights. 

On the way to the Crocodile River, we saw this baby zebra nursing from its mom.  It looks as if the mom is pregnant again. Hum…does this dispel the thought that nursing moms can’t become pregnant?  Or was this a surrogate mom?

Yesterday was a very special day.  Two Mrs. Warthogs and babies visited us at the African Reunion House. Mr. Tree Frog left us last night, returning this morning. And, in the early afternoon, two male kudus came to call as shown in these precious photos.

Okee Dokee picked us up for one final visit to the Crocodile River. On the way, she stopped to speak to a passing motorist. In Afrikaans, he told her there were many Elephants on the river and to hurry. She translated for us and off we went. Safari luck. 

As we approached the Crocodile River lookout, we spotted only a few of the elephants we saw a moment later when we moved to a better viewing spot.
The Elephants were on the move when something startled them and when they spotted the Rhino on a mad run heading toward them.

Arriving at the river, my breath caught in my throat when we saw dozens of elephants and babies in a large herd. It was hard to believe. As I began taking photos, Okee Dokee spotted a rhino running at full speed toward the elephants. In a matter of seconds, the elephants made a mad dash up the hill of the riverbank leaving dust in their wake.  

There were many more than is shown here, off to the sides.

Rhinos and elephants have little risk from predators but on a rare occasion, they may get into a scuffle.  Something frightened all of them and they ran for their lives. We’ll never know what transpired. But, getting these photos was pure luck, safari luck. In a matter of minutes, they were gone with the exception of a few stranglers at a distance. 

If we’d arrived five minutes later, we’d never have seen them running.

After our last delicious dinner at Jabula Lodge while hanging out with Dawn and Leon, we returned home to find the five zebras standing at the railing waiting for us. How long had they been there? Would we have missed them if we’d stayed out 15 minutes longer or where they bound and determined to wait until we returned? We’ll never know.

They left dust in their wake as they ran to safety.

Feeding them our remaining supply of pellets from our hands, my heart did a flip flop, aching when they finally wandered off. This morning our favorite walking bird, the francolin, padded around the veranda within feet of us. We’ll miss them all.

The zebra family was back waiting for us!

As for our total living expenses in South Africa, including rent, groceries, entertainment, pellets, dining out, tips, airfare, transportation (including the rental car we had for one month), and SIM card and data fees, for a grand total of US $13,120.11, ZAR $146,713 which translates to US $4373.37, ZAR $48,904 for each of the three months we’ve spent in South Africa. 

It was wonderful to see them one more time.

With only a few hours until we walk out the door to begin the long drive to the airport, we’re as well prepared as we can be. Its time to “let go.” Having “let go” of so much in our lives over this past year and a half, this a familiar feeling, one we know we’ll conquer in time.

We happily tossed a few of the remaining pellets their way.

Hopefully, during the upcoming 29 hours of travel time, we’ll have access to an electrical source to charge our equipment, making it possible to document this lengthy journey along the way. 

So, we say goodbye and thank you to Marloth Park, to South Africa, to our friends, human and animal, only hoping that someday we’ll return. A special thank you to Louise and Danie who’s kindness, consideration, generosity, and love added so much to our comfort and enjoyment.

Over the coming years, as we continue on our worldwide journey, on many occasions we’ll tell the story of our glorious experiences in South Africa, bringing tears to our eyes and gratitude to our hearts. 

But, for today, we continue on…

Thank you, Mr. Tree Frog for serving as the mascot for all the “small things” that brought us so much pleasure during our time in Marloth Park. Even you will be remembered.

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