High cost of living in the US compared to South Africa…”You’ve Got a Friend”…That is, “Little” certainly does…Pig paradise in the park…

Little told his friend that the “pickins” were good at this house so they both climbed the six steps up to the veranda to the front door.  I was in the shower and missed the fun event. Tom tossed pellets to the ground that motivated them to climb down.

“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”

The Big Daddies didn’t seem as interested in the lucerne as the female kudus but this one managed a few mouthsful.

Yesterday’s trip to Komatipoort went well. The visit with the dentist, Dr. Luzann, went better than expected and once my dental work is completed over the next month, I’ll share details here.

“Pigs on the porch,”  Pigs in the pond,” and Pigs in a pile,”  It’s “Pig Paradise in the Park.”
Coincidentally Gerhard also had a dentist appointment with Dr. Luzann yesterday, a few hours after mine ended. He was thrilled with his cleaning and of course, the reasonable cost of ZAR 388 (US $27) compared to the typical ZAR 2876 ($200) cost for the same service in the US.  
“Little” was checking out what the kudus were eating.

After his appointment ended, he and Rita headed to Ngwenya where we met up with them for drinks on the veranda followed by the buffet dinner in the dining room. As always the conversation was superb, the drinks refreshing, and the food, although the same items each Thursday, was consistently good.

We’re always surprised by the reasonable cost for such a meal with drinks, tax, and tips. Mine and Tom’s total was only ZAR 325 (US $22.60).  At Jabula Lodge and Restaurant, which we consider a much better restaurant, it’s usually twice the amount but well worth the added expense.

At this point, we’ve been dining out twice a week, once at Ngwenya and once at Jabula. When we considered the combined weekly total it runs about ZAR 935 (US $65) averaging at ZAR 467 (US $32.50). This is at least half as much as similar meals at a restaurant in the US, if not more.

Tom didn’t feed him on the veranda but I surely would have.  Little is my favorite warthog.

Once again, when we arrive in the US in 115 days, dining out for each meal, we’ll be shocked by the high prices, not only for restaurants, accommodations, and rental cars but for all other incidental costs. It’s the nature of the beast.

And, speaking of “the beast”…Tom had me in stitches this morning when he showed me the above photo he’d taken only moments earlier when I was in the shower. Seeing the photo reminded me of James Taylor’s popular song from 1971, “You’ve Got a Friend.” Click here to listen!

Piglets in a pile.

Apparently, Little, our favorite warthog had “told” a friend our house was a good place to visit. But, not only the garden of our bush house but also, the veranda which requires only a few gingerly executed steps on slippery tiles to reach.  

They both embarked on the adventure and arrived without incident, shocking Tom in the process when he spotted the two pigs on the porch  We couldn’t help but laugh over the irony of the situation.

A male ostrich’s flattened feathers during the downpour several days ago.

What’s particularly funny is that animals are just like us, or shall I say, we’re just like them? They’re nothing like a good friend (s) and we, like Little, have been blessed to have many friends in Marloth Park and other parts of the world as our years-long journey continues.

Tonight, we’ll dine in, spending most of the evening on the veranda, at least until the insects bombard us.  Every moment we spend whether it’s “Just the Two of Us” (click here for that song) or with wildlife or human friends, we feel fortunate during this very special time in our lives.

May you feel fortunate as well. Happy day!

Photo from one year ago today, December 14, 2017:

Punta Arenas, Chile would have been a great port of call to visit but bad weather prevented the necessary use of the tenders. We sailed away. For more details, please click here.