New site & Drakensbergs

New site & Drakensbergs
These are the mts from our village

Sunday, July 29, 2012

28 July - ZamBots

July 29, 2012

The first two weeks of school were crazy.  All the work on the data base (SA SAMS) had to be completed and turned in to the regional office.  Guess who was elected to do much of the computer work.  Actually I volunteered because I know I can do it faster than anyone else and they were all busy with mark sheets.  I also had the planning for my classes for Term 3 that somehow never got done during the break.  Any way it’s weekend again and I have some time so here is the rest of our vacation pictures and happenings.

So after two days in the village and a great day at Kruger with Hannah, we flew off to Zambia. On the flight we could see the Kalahari Desert and Makgadikgadi Salt Pans – a huge stretch of white in the desert.  As we flew into Livingston, the plane banked and we could see Victoria Falls from the air with the spray billowing out of the chasm the water falls into.  We got to the backpacker that would be our base for our time there and had some time to wander around Livingston.  The next morning we were picked up early to be driven to Chobe National Park in Botswana.  We had to cross the Chobe River that separates Botswana and Namibia on a little motor boat.

We had a two-day, one-night safari in a tented camp.  Our first activity was a river drive on the Chobe in a small boat that could get really close to the shore.  We saw elephants crossing the river to get to better grass on the other side.

We also saw lots of birds! hippos, crocodiles, buffalos and more.  Then we went in an open safari vehicle for a long game drive along the river.

The highlight of that drive happened just as it was getting dark.  I finally saw a lion!  We were quite close in the open vehicle.  When he got up and stretched, I really hoped he was going to walk the other way, which he did.  Very exciting!!! It was dusk so the picture didn’t come out very well.  But you can see how close we were.

We went to the campsite and had a nice dinner and slept in tents with lions and hyena and maybe a leopard talking during the night not far away. 

 We were assured that we would be safe in our tents because of the fire and a big light that was on all night.

The next morning we went on another game drive and came around a bend into the midst of an elephant herd having breakfast.  I could have reached out and touched them they were so close.  We could hear them crunching the wigs they were eating.  Did you know elephants have brown eyes? (at least some of them)
One of the neat things about Chobe was how many different animals you could see at one time along the river – giraffes, elephants, baboons, hippos, crocs, buffalo all at once!  The other thing that is different from Kruger is the size of the herds! – one herd of buffalo we saw  had several hundred animals and we saw elephant herds of 20-30!!  It was a good time to visit this park because it was winter – dry season – so all the animals stayed near the river.

When we got back to Livingston we went to see Victoria Falls.

Below is a picture of the bridge over the Zambezi River that separates Zambia and Zimbabwe.  We watched some people bungie juming off the bridge! CRAZY! And not for me.

 The falls were amazing! And it wasn’t even the time of year for the biggest volume of water over the falls.  The local name for the falls translates as "the mist that thunders."

There is a bridge to a promontory that is on the opposite side of the chasm from the falls.  They will rent you a rain-poncho for $.50 because walking across it is like being in a heavy rainfall. 

 When I leaned over the bridge I could see a rainbow that was almost a complete circle!!

Our last day in Livingston we went on a white rafting trip on the Zambezi River.  Pictures about that adventure next time.

Bye for now,

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