It’s still cool here. Since we arrived on Sunday, it hasn’t topped 60F, 15.6C, but today may be the exception. We didn’t bring cold-weather clothing, other than lightweight jackets and hoodie sweatshirts for each of us. Usually, in May, the weather warms up in Minnesota. But the summers are short here, mainly from June to August when it starts cooling down.
The summer can be sweltering, and in case you haven’t heard, the joke is the mosquito is Minnesota’s state bird. They are worse here than they ever were in Africa. Fortunately, malaria and other mosquito-borne illnesses are not as prevalent as they are in Africa.
Once it warms up, in our old lives, we always turned on our whole house, central air conditioning, generally keeping it on day and night until mid-August when it would cool down. The aircon kept the mozzies at bay since they don’t thrive in air conditioning. Also, the inflammation from the bites doesn’t last as long as they do in Africa.
When we return to South Africa in 18 days, the mozzies will be considerably less bothersome with winter starting on June 21. The temperature and humidity drop and the mozzies disappear, at least for a few months anyway. We particularly love winter in the bush with milder temps, fewer insects, and less of a presence of snakes. Snakes tend to stay undercover in cool weather.
But, like Minnesota’s short summers, South Africa has short winters, and only a few months later, all of the above-mentioned return with a fury…heat, humidity, insects, and snakes. Then again, these very aspects of life in the bush make it all the more unusual and interesting.
Am I sounding as if I’m missing it? Without being able to see family yet due to our ongoing symptoms, it’s easy for my mind to wander back to where we feel most at “home.” No, we never plan to live there permanently, but for now, with all the Covid-19 restrictions still impacting word travel for nomads like us, it’s the place where we can enjoy ourselves the most with our human and animal friends.
Since we don’t yet feel comfortable dining in a restaurant with all of our coughing, last night we headed to the Cub Foods market for a few items, such as laundry soap, bar soap, cough drops, and of course, Tom’s favorite plain old-fashioned cake doughnuts which he loves with his coffee in the morning.
I purchased a pint container of guacamole to add atop my chopped hard-boiled eggs from the hotel’s included breakfast, which is basically a continental breakfast. The hard-boiled eggs are the only item I can eat based on my diet. Tom goes to breakfast early and brings the eggs back to me in our room, along with a very good cup of decaf coffee. It works for us.
After the stop at Cub Foods, we headed to Wendy’s, which Tom wanted, and again to Chipotle for me. Back at the hotel, we sat on the bed with our food on our laps with towels protecting the bed and watched an episode of Shark Tank. After eating, we watched, This is Us, and finally, another episode of the new miniseries on Amazon Prime, The Offer, which is about the making of the movie, The Godfather. Very entertaining.
At about 10:00 pm, I started watching “Out of Africa” on the TV, staying awake until after 11:30 when it ended. I’ve seen the movie no less than ten times but enjoy it on each occasion. No, it’s not authentic in many ways but still provides some thrills about Africa.
Years ago, I wrote a story about this movie in a post when we’d seen the movie again and discovered very little of the movie was filmed in Africa. Instead, it was made in a studio in Hollywood. We watched it, again at that particular time as a “movie in the bush” outdoors, amid the wildlife in Maroth Park in 2013. Here’s our story about that here.
That’s all for today, dear readers. It’s crazy being here and unable to see them. Hopefully, we’ll be improved enough to start seeing family members by tomorrow.
Photo from one year ago today, May 4, 2021: