Hot, hot, hot…And, the beat goes on…WiFi out all afternoon…

Even the minuscule amount of rain brings greenery to life.

“Sighting of the day in the Bush.”

Baby impalas, sheltered from the heat of the midday sun, guarded by one of the attentive moms.

What can I say to avoid sounding as if we’re complaining? We’re not. Instead,
we consider today’s comments as an observation. It’s hot, hot, hot. Today’s high temperature was 42C (108F) which it has reached now at 1700 hours (5:00 pm).

Most often, the peak temperature for the day occurs around 1500 hours (3:00 pm) and begins to taper off an hour or two later. The evenings aren’t nearly as
bad but it’s impossible to stay indoors in the living area of this house. The
massively high ceilings contribute to a level of heat indoors that is hard to
An awkward sitting position for a female ostrich. Could she be on her nest?
It’s like an oven with no way to cool it off, even late into the evening. We run a
fan in the living room, but all it does is blow hot air around. Thank
goodness we have an aircon in the bedroom, but even that chugs along in this intense heat.
How much hotter can it get? We heard from locals that in 2016, December highs were in the 50C range (122F). Over the next few days, even higher temperatures are predicted. 
Cape buffalos on a hill on the Crocodile River in Kruger National Park.
We recall it being hot here five years ago but not quite this hot day after day. It
has a tendency to make one feel exhausted and listless although we both make
every effort to go about our days as we would during cooler periods.
Now, we’re having wi-fi issues due to all the “extra” people in Marloth Park
during the holiday season. The system can only handle so much. Fortunately, the load shedding power outages are on hold at the moment. 

We’ll see how that goes over the next few weeks during the holiday season. As I write on an offline app, I realize I may never have an opportunity to upload this post before the day’s end.
Two male cape buffalos, who most likely were ostracized from the remainder of their “obstinacy” when a more significant or stronger other male won the favor of the females. These males form groups for life since they’ll never be allowed to return to the herd.
In South Africa, the school holiday ends on January 9th, when most holidaymakers will leave Marloth Park, their holiday having ended when their kids return to
school. That’s almost three weeks from today.
We understand and respect the importance of tourists coming to the park to
generate revenue for shops and homeowners of holiday properties but even they,
fully grasp how everything changes when the tourists are here.
Baboons and monkeys are our least favorite animals. Due to their intellect, they are crafty and dangerous and can destroy a house or garden in minutes, searching for food or merely being destructive for entertainment.
We won’t be able to go to Kruger for the next three weeks either. We’ve already
heard about the delays at the Crocodile Bridge, and soon, guests will have to
pay a fee to enter at a specific time of day on top of the regular entrance

Our annual “Wild Card” doesn’t afford us any extra privileges. We’d
also have to pay additional for a “reservation.” Only 600 cars are allowed into the park at a time at any of the many entrance gates.

An elephant family drinking from the river.  The drought continues relentlessly.
Over the past few days, to cool off, we’ve driven through Marloth Park looking for wildlife photo ops but more so to stay cool for a few hours during the day.  

This morning at 7:30 am, we headed to Komatipoort for my dentist appointment at 8:00 am. After the appointment, we walked the short distance to Stoep Cafe for breakfast, grabbing our favorite table on the veranda. 
Eating a hot breakfast in the heat proved to have been a bad idea. We were both
“sweating up a storm” while we ate, and foolish me had ordered hot tea.
By the time we finished our meal and headed back to the air-conditioned comfort of the car, we were drenched in sweat. I don’t usually sweat much, but the humidity, coupled with the high temps, has changed everything.
Two males impalas stop by for food and a rare visit.
We remind ourselves, over and over again. This is Africa, and we chose to be here. Most of the time, it’s been a glorious experience. And we face the reality, that along with amazing adventures of our lives, there is a price to pay, beyond money, beyond mere inconvenience. It’s all part of the experience.

So today, as we wait for the temperature to drop and the WiFi to come back on, we look forward to our evening on the veranda tonight, as always, hoping a few, if only a few of our wildlife friends will stop by.  

Last night we had 10 warthogs come to call. Let’s see if they return tonight. We have pellets, a fresh batch of lucerne, ice-cold carrots, apples, celery tops, and lettuce, and we’ll be waiting for them.

Have a great holiday season evening.

Photo from one year ago today, December 18, 2018:

Stunning view of Ushuaia from the veranda while on the cruise in South America. For more photos, please click here.