Load shedding is annoying…New friends in the garden…

Here is our new friend, One Tusk. We’ve seen another warthog with only one tusk, but this one has a substantial remaining tusk.

Who’s in the garden this morning?

  • 5 warthogs – inc. Little, Tiny, Lonely Boy, Lonely Girl, and others
  • 11 bushbucks – inc. Thick Neck, Bad Leg, Spikey, and others
  • 12 kudus – inc. Bossy, Baby Daddy, Medium Daddy, two youngsters, and others
  • 1 wildebeest – inc Broken Horn,
  • 2 Frank and The Misses
This is another new friend, Old Man, who had lost both of his horns. He is very old based on visible signs of aging on his face and body. However, he seems to have a friendly disposition. We hope to see him again.

Load shedding during the evening is the most annoying time for us, especially from dark to 10:00 pm, 2200 hrs. Now, as the cold winter weather rolls in, staying outdoors is uncomfortable. Also, we noticed very few animals stopping by after dark, based on photos on our trail cam during this cold spell. They, too, are chilled and prefer to hunker down together for warmth or find a warm spot for the night in the case of solitary animals.

If the power is out for 2 ½ hours from 7:00 pm, 1900 hrs, there’s not much to do in the dark other than play mindless games on our phones. Unfortunately, when the power is out, so is the WiFi, and we cannot stream any of our favorite shows. I tried downloading some movies from various sites, but this is not easily accomplished with a Chromebook. Doing so would get us through these dull and boring periods.

Old Man and Broken Horn arrived in the garden within minutes of one another. Of course, they could be related, but many of the animals in Marloth Park are related in one way or another.

We can add a few apps to aid in this process, but at this point, I don’t feel comfortable downloading these obscure apps with few, if any, reviews, which could easily create some issues. We don’t want to take any chances right now. Tom’s new laptop should arrive today and my keyboard, although improved, is still acting up.

Before having Chromebooks, we used the fantastic downloading site Graboid for US $19.95, ZAR 271 a month. When we tried to download the app after buying the Chromebooks, we were disappointed to find out that it wouldn’t work on them. Downloading a different browser wouldn’t help. It was due to Chrome’s operating system. Unfortunately, there was nothing we could do about that.

Old Man’s small horns could have been from fighting over the years.

Tonight from 7:00 pm, 1900 hours, load shedding will commence for 2 ½ hours. When Rita and Gerhard suggested we all get together, as usual, it dawned on me that if they came here for sundowners at 4:00 pm, 1600 hours and the four of us entertain ourselves in idle chatter, we can head to a restaurant (most have generators) for dinner by about 6:30 pm, 1830 hrs, and take our time ordering diner and dining.

It’s not too difficult to spend three hours in a restaurant with fun friends. At least, we’ll get through another night this week during load shedding. As for restaurants, meals and drinks must be paid in cash since WiFi is out during load shedding, and they aren’t able to use their credit card processing machines. Makes sense.

Another thing we noticed about Old Man was the length of his tail which almost reached the ground. Broken Horn’s tail is half a meter shorter.

Load shedding requires residents to do a little planning, especially in the evenings. Daytime is less bothersome when most have tasks and projects they can do around the house during the day. Heading to Kruger National Park is a great way to spend time during power outages.

Walking in the park is also an excellent way to pass load shedding time. Unfortunately, with my legs less steady from the surgeries two-plus years ago, we don’t take a risk and walk on the uneven dirt roads in Marloth Park. Reading books, either paper or on devices, is an excellent way to spend time during outages.

He appeared rather content in our garden, staying for over an hour, spending most of the time looking at us.

For us, we had both read so many books in the first few years of our world travels that we have since lost interest in reading any fiction, preferring to read non-fiction on topics we enjoy online, at any given time which may not work during load shedding.

Some locals may stay busy with puzzles during load shedding if they have some suitable source of light. I like this idea, but we don’t have a proper table where I’d be willing to leave an unfinished puzzle. Moreover, Tom has no interest in puzzles. And, after years of playing Gin and me beating Tom, he lost interest in that. Ha!

Today, Tom will set up his new Chromebook that just arrived from Takealot, South Africa’s version of Amazon. Tonight, we’ll have a delightful evening with Rita and Gerhard.

Have a fantastic day!

Photo from one year ago today, June 9, 2020:

An appropriately named Fish Eagle stood watch over the “catch of the day.” For more photos, please click here.

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