Enough procrastination for now…Finally, we’re making decisions…Fun new photos…

A lovely female kudu was sound asleep in our garden. She didn’t move for over an hour.

It’s been easy for us to procrastinate after many cancellations have occurred over the past two years. We no more than book a trip to another country, and close to departure time, everything changes, and either our flight is canceled or changed, or we decide not to go for one safety reason or another.

In the 14 months we’ve spent in South Africa since January 13, 2021, we’ve only left the country twice; once to fly to Zambia for a visa run and another to fly to the US for a visa run, vaccinations, and see family. We accomplished our objectives and returned for yet another 90 days in each case.

On one occasion, President Ramphosa provided an automatic visa extension for visitors already in the country. That worked well for us since it was close to when we had to leave anyway. Recently, we applied for and received a 90 days extension that runs into April 23. But, in this case, we’re leaving in 20 days, a month earlier than the extension date, to get to Florida in time for our cruise on April 8.

Eight female kudus hung around our garden all morning.

Then, of course, we were scheduled to go to friend Karen and Rich’s wedding on February 11. But, based on negative news in the US about Omicron, which was minimal here and extensive in the US, we would have had to quarantine in a hotel for 14 days before the wedding. That didn’t work for us. We had no interest in hotel quarantine after what happened in India in 2020, resulting in a 10-month quarantine in a hotel.

Now, with the upcoming cruise on April 8, leaving from Florida and feeling comfortable it won’t cancel, we booked our flights to Tampa, a rental car for 15 days while we’ll stay with Karen and Rich. On the morning of the cruise, we’ll drive to Fort Lauderdale, drop off the car at the airport, and take a taxi to the port.

With the high cost of living in England, we recently wondered if it made sense to fly to a less expensive country and enjoy its wonders. The dilemma begins at the end of the cruise in Southampton, England, on April 21. We have two months “to kill” until our next cruise in Istanbul, Turkey, at the end of June.

Our resident tree frog lives atop this structural post on the veranda. She croaks off and on during the day but ramps it up at night, communicating with other frogs.

As mentioned in yesterday’s post here, we listed all the non-Schengen countries we could visit during the gap in our itinerary. But most of those countries are around Russia, and we don’t feel it is sensible to stay in many of those countries right now, based on the war in Ukraine.

I awoke during the night and started thinking of what would make the most sense for us. In my mind, I came to a decision. All I had to do was present it to Tom and see how he felt.  As we have often mentioned, we never choose to stay anywhere in the world without both of us totally in agreement.

This morning when I bolted out of bed, I approached Tom, who was sitting at the table on the veranda, as usual, and posed the question, “Honey, shall we just “bite the bullet” and stay put in England for the entire two-plus months as originally planned, staying one to two weeks in each location we visit.” When we did that in 2019, we had a wonderful experience, enjoying each unique experience along the way.

This was the tiniest mongoose baby we’d ever seen.

Tom immediately replied with a resounding “yes!” It means we’d have to move frequently, but we’re good at that, living out of suitcases from location to location. We can rent holiday homes, cook our meals and haul our leftover food with us from one locale to the next. That way, we’d reduce the cost of eating dinner out every night, although we’ll still dine out once or twice a week.

Now, we go back to the drawing board, searching for holiday homes, using the VRBO link on our website while accepting the reality that we’ll be paying a lot more than we did last time, which was also expensive. From what we can see online, average prices for holiday homes are as much as 30% higher than before the pandemic.

I suppose some property owners have been trying to make up for lost revenue during travel hesitancy and restrictions in the past two years. Ultimately, this philosophy may not serve them well when their overpriced holiday rentals are sitting empty.

That’s it for today, folks. We’ll be back tomorrow with more!

Be well.

Photo from one year ago today, March 3, 2021:

Last year at this time, we were scheduled to travel to the Maasai Mara in Kenya in 37 days to stay at Little Governor’s Camp. We had to cancel the trip when Kenya closed its borders. For more, please click here.

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