Back to Komati today for appointments…

Lollie and her three piglets, so tiny, so cute.

We are experiencing a severe lack of wildlife visitors due to the upcoming weekend. From here on, this fact may continue until after the first of the year.  Starting in early December, most of the holiday homes in Marloth Park have been rented through the first of the year.

The restaurants will be packed, parking at Two Trees will be impossible, and entrance into Kruger National Park will only be allowed via an appointment. Now that travel has picked up, as the pandemic has ended, people are traveling here from all over the world.

Another warthog mom brought her four piglets for a visit. They are so cute and funny.

Many US travelers who are still employed do not come to Marloth Park due to the short term of their paid vacation/holiday periods and the lengthy time required to fly here and back, which may comprise four days of a two-week vacation. Few travelers want to use so much of their vacation on flights and often long layovers in airports between flights. Also, they may have concerns about jetlag and malaria prevention,

Many are opposed to living in an insect-snake-ridden area where they can’t drink tap water, with countless unpredictable power and water outages. Taking a cold shower in the dark may be a deterrent for some travelers. Often load shedding results in seven to ten hours a day without power. When unable to use the aircon during the night when there’s an outage, many are impacted by the quality of their sleep.

This mom has a hole in her side that appears to have maggots in it which help to eat the dying flesh which may prevent infection. She may have been fighting with another warthog or animal to protect her piglets.

One of the most challenging aspects, hard for travelers, is the weather in the spring and summer months. It won’t be summer until December 21, yet many days have been uncomfortable with high humidity, dew point, and temperatures. Overall, this past week has had several almost intolerable days. (Luckily, today is much cooler, and the humidity is lower).

Well, you know, if you’ve been reading our posts, the list goes on and on. Many tourists like to dine out for every meal, which is a part of the enjoyment of traveling. With only a handful of restaurants in Marloth Park, visitors can become frustrated over dining-out options. (Of course, if they’d tried Jabula they may have an entirely different take on it and love returning time and again).

Precious little piglets.

Yesterday, when we grocery shopped for the next two weeks until we leave for Seychelles, we were both sweating so much that when we entered the house, immediately, I changed into cooler clothes. When Tom unloaded all the groceries from the bags onto the counter, I looked at the pile of food and cringed. I still had a headache and couldn’t imagine getting through the task ahead of me. Since I cook, its better to put the food away.

Somehow, I got through it and could get back to work on finishing yesterday’s post and getting it uploaded. The WiFi was out when we left for Komati but was back on when we returned. After getting back to it, I got it uploaded after 4:00 pm, 1600 hrs., and finally, I could relax for an hour before making dinner, which I hadn’t prepped in the morning.

Then again, you know my spiel now…it’s all worth it. The first time we came here in 2013, was in December. The park was packed with tourists like us, and we had the time of our lives, which resulted in us repeatedly visiting with little regard for all of the above-listed inconveniences. We’ve gotten used to it.

It appears she has two females and one boy, based on facial warts or lack thereof, visible at this early age.

Also, a tourist visiting for a few weeks may experience only some of the above. But, never once have we heard of anyone not loving every moment here, regardless of the challenges. Many dreams of returning in years to come. Some do, and some don’t, more often due to the cost of staying here in the short term, especially for airfare.

We’ll head to Jabula as usual, anxious to see Leon and Dawn. With the awful headache this week, I didn’t feel up to going out. Last night, I started back on the small dose, 10 mg, of Amitriptyline, (in South Africa, it’s called Trepiline). I awoke this morning, after a fitful night’s sleep without a headache and reduced facial pain. The drug usually takes weeks to kick in. I am going to stick with it this time, even with the daytime sleepiness, possible weight gain and brain fog.

I will try to combat the possible weight gain with getting some exercise, no more low carb snacks after dinner and eating a little less at meals. The weight gain is caused by increased appetite for most patients. I have enough self control to combat this. I hope.

Soon, we are on our way back to Komati for my dentist appointment and picking up a new prescription for the medication and then to the pharmacy to get it filled.

Have a great day and weekend!

Photo from one year ago today, November 11, 2021:

A group of hippos is called “bloat.” Often they wander off on their own. For more photos, please click here.

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