“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”
|Lots of kudus by the steps to the veranda.|
The past few days since we returned from Zambia and Botswana have been a blur with social activities and major animals sightings, all the while dealing with our emotions about having to leave South Africa on November 21, 2018, as opposed to our planned February exit to head to Kenya for the upcoming photographic safari tour.
One of the main reasons we’ve planned our upcoming travels years in advance has been to avoid the very situation we’re in now, trying to find where to go, where to live, and how to get there with very little advance notice. After all, we have to be out of here in exactly 86 days, hardy enough time to plan a 90-day trip meeting our criteria.
A giraffe stopped by the picnic site at Frikkies Dam in Lionspruit during yesterday’s braai.
Our readers can surely relate to this when you realize how much work and effort it takes, even if working with a travel agent, to plan all the details for even a two-week-long holiday outside of your home country.
As a matter of fact, traveling in one’s own country, figuring out where to stay, what to do, and transportation for 90-days is a daunting task. Over the past four days, we’ve spent all of our free time searching for options.
|Since there are two lions in Lionspruit there is a fence around the braai area. As a result, I had to slip through the slats in the fence to take these giraffe photos.|
We keep running into obstacles, the first being, we aren’t interested in traveling to any country that doesn’t allow for a 90-day visa upon entry. Why would we put ourselves in such a position of having to deal with immigration every 30 days? We wouldn’t.
We use this online guide we’ve used since the onset of our travels but always conduct further research for any recent updates and changes for any countries we may be interested in visiting. This particular form was updated as recently as July 2018.
|It was Matthew’s 16th birthday (the young man in a blue and white shirt) and everyone sang the song, ate cake, and wished him well. He is the son of JJ (in the green shirt behind him) and Flo (not shown in this photo. Louise and Danie are shown as well.|
As we conduct the research, we eliminate one country after another. We found a house in Namibia that particularly appealed to us. It showed on the popular holiday home website, HomeAway.com, as being available for our dates.
I contacted the owner asking about the Wi-Fi situation only to discover the house wasn’t available for our dates since they will be living in the property during that period.
|Another outstanding early morning today. This time another record-breaking kudu gathering in our garden, 20 of the magnificent beasts including a few males (whom we call Big Daddy)and many females and their young.|
However, they’d made no note or indication on the property listing that it wasn’t available during our dates. It took several email messages over two days to find this out, leaving us frustrated and disappointed when this had appeared to be a great option with Namibia’s 90-day visa policy for citizens with US passports.
Back to the drawing board. In short order, we gave up on Namibia. With a low population and little tourism, holiday homes are limited and/or too expensive. Also, as indicated on the HomeAway and other holiday home sites, there was only 5% to 10% of the available inventory available for our dates.
|How exciting to see so many of these exquisite antelope, popular among locals and tourists in Marloth Park.|
This is why, dear world travelers, booking well in advance makes all the sense in the world. This is why, dear readers, that we’ve chosen to book venues one to two years in advance. We’ve often been asked why we book so far in advance and this particular situation explains it all. There’s simply not much available last-minute, nor are there any better “deals” to be had last-minute under most circumstances.
So the search continues and will continue until we’ve firmed up our plans, paid the deposits, and booked transportation as to where we’ll be going for the 90 day period. We’ll post our decision here once we’ve wrapped it up. In the interim, we’ll make every effort to keep our frustrations under wraps including in discussing them here. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
|Wildebeest Willie also got in on the action along with dozens of helmeted guinea fowl.|
Yesterday, we had a nice break from this topic when we joined Louise and Danie and their wonderful friends for a braai at Frikkies Dam inside Lionspruit Game Reserve which is located inside Marloth Park. We’d participated in such a party a few months ago and then, too, had a wonderful time.
South Africans like their food and drink so all flowed with fervors as a few different braais resulted in some seriously fine smells and subsequent tastes when everyone shared a little of this and that. As mentioned we’d prepared our usual crust-less egg, cheese, mushroom, onion, and sausage quiche and it was devoured along with the other delicious items.
|We picked up the new little rental car on Thursday when we arrived in Nelspruit.|
We were back “home” by 1640 hours (4:40 pm) and couldn’t wait to set up the veranda for the upcoming evening’s activities in the bush. Who would stop by to see us this time? No matter than a few minutes after we arrived, the visitors came, some hiding in the bush waiting for us to return.
Oh, good grief this is beyond description! I want more, more, more!
May everything you want more of, come your way!
Photo from one year ago today, August 27, 2017:
Due to a Wi-Fi and power outage on this date one year ago, we were unable to post anything but a short blurb describing our plight. As a result, we had no photo on this date.