This morning when I asked Tom to carry the heavy laundry basket outdoors to the laundry area so I could do a few loads, he returned to the house to tell me to get the camera and be prepared to run. I had no idea what he meant. In those few seconds it took me to get there, I thought it might be a snake or some other exotic creature.
As it turned out, it was a hornet’s nest of some sort, which I’d seen on several occasions but thought it was dead. As I snapped the photo, they started to swarm, and we hightailed out of there as fast as we could. Tom managed to squirt a few shots of Doom but not enough to kill them all.
Vusi just arrived, and he’ll figure it out as he often does. With both of us allergic to bees, we couldn’t take any chances trying to do it ourselves. I know what stung me since I felt the bite in that outdoor laundry area. It had to be a bite from one of those ugly things. Yuck!
I am hesitant to go to the laundry area since a few strays may be flying around. I’ve decided to wait a day to go back there, hoping that Vusi’s removal of the nest and spraying of the general area may have driven any strays away. I did get the photo, but it’s blurry, as shown, since my hands weren’t steady when I took the shot. Ugly things, aren’t they?
We realized we needed to be more diligent in checking our surroundings for nests. We’re pretty good about looking for snakes and scorpions but haven’t been as conscientious in looking for nests in ceilings and near baseboards. However, we have inadvertently spotted a few that Vusi or Zef removed.
Tom spotted two nests inside the house on a baseboard a few days ago. This was on the weekend, and we didn’t want to wait for Vusi or Zef to come on Monday. He sprayed the nests thoroughly, waited a while, and then scrapped the nests off of the baseboard. We keep checking the area to see if they returned. So far, so good.
This morning I received the comprehensive list of documents we need to submit to the law firm to commence the visa extension process. Since I had started compiling a few of the docs already, we had a good start on it. By Monday, after we sign a few documents, Louise will print; we can sign them and then scan them using the handy new scanning app we added to my phone called Mobile Scanner. It’s the best scanner app we’ve ever used in the past.
Tom wrapped up the flight details this morning from MPQ (Nelspruit/Mpumalanga/Kruger) to EDI (Edinburgh, Scotland). We got a PDF document from Expedia to submit with our other documents. Also, we must have a booked flight out of South Africa by the time our new visa extensions end, which, if granted, will end on June 8, 2023.
We prefer not to include bank statements, but South Africa’s Immigration requires all requests for extensions to include a recent bank statement illustrating that the applicants have sufficient funds to sustain them during the additional time they spend in the country. Also, the bank statement must show both names of the applicants, or a marriage certificate would be required. Fortunately, our bank accounts show both of our names.
Once we submit all of these documents and more, we’ll still have more to do, including paying additional fees of about ZAR 1000, each, US $58 which the law firm will process for us. Plus, they will prepare the online application, which we will review later. The total cost for the extension including legal and governmental fees will be about ZAR 24152, US $1400, which is a lot less than flying to Zambia or another non-bordering country to attempt to get another visa stamp.
After an almost two-week hiatus, we’ll return to Jabula for dinner. We’re looking forward to seeing Dawn and Leon and hearing about their holiday in Mozambique and Swaziland over the past eight days. It will be fun to return to our usual weekend dining spot.
We hope all is well with you and your loved ones.
Photo from one year ago today, January 20, 2022: