Whew! When I stepped out of the bedroom this morning, I was taken aback by the blast of hot air so early in the day. It isn’t always about the temperature. As we’ve learned from living in Africa, the dew point determines how uncomfortable we will be on any given day. Today is one of those days.
The high will only be 94F, 34.4C. But the dew point right now is 73, making the air sticky hot and us sticky sweaty, even after a cool shower only a short time ago. I am sipping on my iced coffee, which I’ve switched to since summer began, and at the moment, sitting on the bed with the door closed and the fan on. The room retained some of the coolness from the aircon during the night.
When I resumed my indoor walking schedule this morning, I was reminded of how much of a scorcher today will be. I can’t wear skimpy clothes, not only because I don’t have any, but also because wearing skimpy clothes invites mosquito bites with any exposed skin. If I weren’t concerned about the electric bill, which we now pay ½ (based on our insistence), I’d probably turn it on while working on the post and while exercising. I’d rather use the electricity at night so that we can sleep than during the day.
I cover any exposed skin with DEET repellent three times a day, the only repellent that works for me. Since we added the hypo-allergenic mattress cover, I haven’t had a single dust mite spot anywhere on my body. Wow! That’s been great! Right now, I only have three or four itchy mozzie bites, mainly from being outdoors in the evenings. Last year at this time, I had hundreds.
Right now, there are some power outages in Marloth Park. Most likely, this is due to a brief thunderstorm that rolled through last night. Fortunately, our area isn’t included in this annoyance.
Yesterday, we went to Komatipoort for our 11:00 am dentist appointments to have our teeth cleaned. A Covid-19 patient showed up for their appointment, knowing they’d tested positive but, due to no symptoms, kept their appointment as scheduled. Once we arrived at the dentist’s office, the receptionist, Daleen, told us that she’d sent me an email to say our appointments had to be canceled.
As a result, the dental office had to close for a week, and the facility had to be sterilized. All appointments were canceled, including ours, which we fully understood. We rescheduled for February. We still had to go to Komati to grocery shop and pick up my year’s supply of contact lenses from the optometrist. Tom’s new glasses will come in next week, which we’ll pick up when we shop again.
Due to numerous Omicron cases, all the schools and many businesses in Komati had closed. We were cautious when we shopped, wiping down the cart with sanitizing wipes made available and avoiding getting close to other people. It was quiet in the store, which was unusual.
Based on how active we’ve been socially these past months since the onset of Omicron, we’re surprised we haven’t been infected. We know that Omicron is not as dangerous as the Delta variant, but we still are very cautious, based on my health concerns. I don’t know how well I’d handle getting the virus and don’t care to find out.
Tonight, we’ll meet with Rita, Gerhard, Petra, and Fritz for their last night in the bush. They will return to Germany starting tomorrow from Johanessburg. Rita and Gerhard will drive them to the distant Tambo airport (a five-hour road trip), stay overnight to avoid driving back to Marloth Park in the dark (very dangerous due to carjacking), and return to Marloth Park on Sunday. They will move out of the huge Khaya Umdani house and move back into their favorite house on Hornbill, where we stayed in 2013/2014.
We’ve been staying in quite a bit this past week and are looking forward to getting out. No doubt, we’ll all have a fantastic time together at Jabula tonight with good food, drinks, service, and hosts. We haven’t made plans for Saturday evening yet but are considering some options.
May you have an enjoyable day and evening wherever you may be!
Photo from one year ago today, January 28, 2021: