A Travellerspoint blog

The Rhino Whisperer

The Rhino Whisperer
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Thom wakes early and since it was Bob and Christine's anniversary we wanted to have their tent set up for them. They had upgraded the night before but there were no rooms available for our second night so we upgraded them anyway by setting up their tent for them and decorating it with Thom's birthday balloon.

After breakfast we are greeted with two open Jeeps which we will take to go see White Rhinos.
The Happy Anniversary Couple:
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The Happy (someone just had a birthday yesterday) couple...lol
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Ian Harmer is our main tour leader and honestly the best guide we had on our entire trip. I can't stress enough how passionate and knowledgeable this man was and how fortunate we were to have him for the next two days as well!
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The Harmer family has lived in the Matabeleland area since the early 1890’s having arrived with the first Settlers into "Rhodesia." We hop in the jeep with him and off we go.

We are heading toward The Matobo National Park, which forms the core of the Matobo or Matopos Hills, an area of granite kopjes and wooded valleys commencing some 35 kilometres south of Bulawayo, southern Zimbabwe. The hills were formed over 2 billion years ago with granite being forced to the surface, this has eroded to produce smooth "whaleback dwalas" and broken kopjes, strewn with boulders and interspersed with thickets of vegetation. Mzilikazi, founder of the Ndebele nation, gave the area its name, meaning 'Bald Heads'. I have pictures of that but those come later....

Part of this area is a conservation reserve for the rhinos. We arrive at this road that seems to head into the bush. Standing there are two men with riffles. Ian speaks to them and then informs us that there are about 6 rhino not too far from here. The men with the riffles join us. Now here I'm thinking "Cool these guys are here to protect us in case one of those rhinos starts to charge us." However, we would soon learn that they were not there to protect us, or at least not just us but rather they were there more to protect the rhinos from poachers.
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We arrive at a clearing and Ian asks us to sign a waiver and the goes over some precautionary instructions like
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1) Don't run away from a rhino, hide behind a tree or rock. They can run up to 30-35mph in 30 sec and weigh well a friggn lot!

2) crouch when approaching a rhino and walk in a single line slowly. They have poor eyesight so bright colors or things that can stand out are not advisable to wear.

3) No flash and no GPS on anything. Poachers are now using GPS on cameras and phones to track the rhinos

4) If Ian yells "RUN" ignore all the other rules and run to a tree and climb up it and pray the rhino goes somewhere else and you don't get stuck up there for hours waiting for it to leave...

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So with all that we are off on foot and I am sooo nervous!!!
You are out there totally exposed and I don't know what kind of trees Ian was talking about but there aren't as many as I'd like to see given the speech we were just given.

We see the white rhinos in the distance and then split into two groups following our leaders couched in single file.
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Crouched down to carefully take some photos
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White rhinos aren’t white and black rhinos aren’t black.
The white rhino’s name is taken from the Afrikaans word “wyd,” which means “wide” and describes its mouth. Early English settlers in South Africa misinterpreted the "wyd" for "white".
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Black rhinos probably got their name from the dark wet mud in their wallows that made them appear black in color. Both species are essentially gray in color. The black rhino though is known for being way more aggressive than the white and it would not be safe to bring a group as large as our this close to one of them.

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They stand as we approach only 100 yards away!
Ian is very familiar with the group. It is a pregnant females and some younger males.
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Ian "talks to the " calling their names and blowing reassuring grunts. All of this calms the group. (Rhinos and the nervous tourists!)

We move closer our group only 50 feet away!
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Ian talks to us about the poaching problem and the rhino's plight all while observing and monitoring any signs that would merit cause for alarm. (And while smoking a cigarette...lol)
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Rhino horns are not made of bone, but of keratin, the same material found in your hair and fingernails. A rhino’s horn is not attached to its skull. It is actually a compacted mass of hairs that continues to grow throughout the animal’s lifetime, just like our own hair and nails. In knowing this you can see why it is even more incredibly sad and horrific what poachers are doing to Rhinos.
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There are local people who are very poor and might have families to feed. These people are desperate. When you add rich people with too much money and a market in Asia that believes Rhino horn cures cancer or works like Viagra all you get are the Rhinos on the endangered list. Oh and don't forget all the corruption in the governments as well. Rhino horn is worth more than elephant ivory. It is worth more than gold.

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And it is a war zone out there! Poachers are now being supplied by international criminal gangs with sophisticated equipment to track and kill rhinos. Hence no gps. Often they use a tranquiliser gun to bring the rhino down and hack of its horn leaving the rhino to wake up and bleed to death very painfully and slowly. Poachers are also often armed with guns making them very dangerous for the anti-poaching teams who put their lives on the line to protect rhinos.
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Rhinos were once abundant throughout Africa and Asia with an approximated worldwide population of 500 000 in the early twentieth century. However, despite intensive conservation efforts, poaching of this iconic species is dramatically increasing, pushing the remaining rhinos closer and closer towards extinction.
Rhino poaching has reached a crisis point, and if the killing continues at this rate, we could see rhino deaths overtaking births in 2016-2018, meaning rhinos could go extinct in the very near future.
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And the scary thing is the scarcity of rhinos today and the corresponding intermittent availability of rhino horn only drives the price higher, and intensifies the pressure on the declining rhino populations.

Back to us for a moment...
After some time Ian says we can move closer for a photo with the Rhinos behind us, maybe 30 feet! I immediately start recalling all those times I watched someone on those shows "When animals attack" and had said things like "Serves those stupid humans right for getting that close to take a picture of a grizzly bear! What you didn't think it would mind you and your camera up in it's personal space right before it mauled the crap out of your face?" I mean let's be honest, I thought being out of a moving jeep was pretty brave and stupid by some parties to begin with...lol

And with that thought in mind I was not inclined to raise my hand to be the first to step away from the group and put my back to the Rhinos. But can we all take a guess at who was? Yup! Thom would have gone and kissed the pregnant one if he was told it would have been ok. Ha!
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And he was rewarded by being one of the only ones to have a picture with the rhino looking right at us because being first they all picked up their heads and ears to say " Hey what's that!"
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But Ian was taking the pictures and didn't seem worried at all. So one by one people went out for a pic until finally I was convinced we would be saved from turning up on a "What not to do when on a safari" buzzfeed list.
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Notice I have only one knee down as to be sure I can still get up to run incase the faces of the people taking our picture turn to sheer panic....lol
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It was so AMAZING!!!! Another great highlight of the whole trip for sure!

Now you may notice that these rhinos have had their horns cut down. This is to protect them. It is still a controversial issue. That and decriminalizing rhino horn. You can read more about that here if you are interested:

http://www.savetherhino.org/rhino_info/thorny_issues

But keep in mind that it is easy to sit back here in the Western world and make judgements on what is good or bad then it is to be there and on the ground and live with what is happening every day. Before I went I wasn't exactly keen on the idea of legalizing rhino horn or the cutting of them but after speaking with the people who are giving up their lives every day to protect them and the fight they are up against even with their own government just to punish the offenders who are caught...well my views have changed for sure.

Anyway this was just the morning of that day and we were off to see cave paintings and spend some time in a village. More in the next post.

Posted by Kelly Rose 16:05 Archived in Zimbabwe Tagged wildlife rhino white_rhino Comments (0)

Great Zimbabwe Ruins

Ooops this was on the way to Bulawayo...DOH!

So after posting the last entry we realized that the Great Zimbabwe Ruins were before Bert's Paradise and Thom's Birthday. The day before, so one of those really long drives was actually this day that I am about to recall. Then Thom's B-day and Bulawayo then Rhinos... Ok now that we got that straight with the only people who it probably matters to (Thom and I) let's check out some ruins!!!

Welcome to Zimbabwe!
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Zimbabwe is the Shona name of the ruins.
The word Zimbabwe consists of two key root words, -mba- which means house; and -bwe, which means stone. The word therefore means "House of Stone".

We stop at the entrance and have a bush lunch before meeting our guide. First we head to the museum because it is the first thing to close. The area is beautiful.
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Here we learn about the history and construction of the ruins. Construction of the stone buildings started in the 11th century and continued for over 300 years. The ruins at Great Zimbabwe are some of the oldest and largest structures located in Southern Africa. It is recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
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The most important artifacts recovered from the Monument are the eight Zimbabwe Birds. We were not allowed to take a picture of them but I found this online so you can at least see what I am speaking of.
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The iconic stone carved Zimbabwe Bird is an emblem of Zimbabwe. It has appeared on the national flags and coats of arms for Zimbabwe and previously Rhodesia as well as on banknotes, coins and stamps. The original birds, carved from soapstone in a unique and distinctive style once stood proudly on guard atop the walls and monoliths of the ancient city of Great Zimbabwe. When the ruins of Great Zimbabwe were excavated by treasure-hunters in the late nineteenth century eight carvings of soapstone birds were unearthed. One bird was sent to Cecil Rhodes at his Groot Schuur home in Cape Town and, somewhat controversially, still remains there. This is the only bird not currently in Zimbabwe.

Great Zimbabwe was built and occupied between the 12th and 15th centuries.
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At the peak of its power and prosperity in the 13th and 14th centuries, the town was the largest settlement in southern Africa. The builders of Great Zimbabwe were the Karanga, from which descend the Shona, who constitute a majority of the population of Zimbabwe today. The town’s landscape was dominated by imposing dry stonewalls forming enclosures and in certain areas terraces and platforms. The ruins form three distinct architectural groups. They are known as the Hill Complex, the Valley Complex and the Great Enclosure.

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So from here we headed up the mountain to the Hill Complex.
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Up Ya go!

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The views were beautiful!
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And we even saw a tiger....Even though I thought they were from Asia!
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This is cool Aussie Nancy and this is only one reason why I love this chick!

We made it!
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Notable features of the Hill Complex include the Eastern Enclosure, in which it is thought the Zimbabwe Birds stood, a high balcony enclosure overlooking the Eastern Enclosure, and a huge boulder in a shape similar to that of the Zimbabwe Bird.
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The Hill Complex was probably always the main spiritual and religious center of Great Zimbabwe. The hill complex is also where the king kept many of his treasures. He could also look out onto his land from up high.

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This place was cool.
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It was where you could look out and see the "kingdom"
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And the King could yell down and you get a fantastic echo back!

Down we Go... The sun is starting to set!
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Watch Out for the GIzillion Baboons!
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Valley Enclosures
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It has been estimated that there were about 50 households within these stone wall enclosures.
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The archaeological evidence suggests that these were the homes of the more important people, while most of the population lived in huts set close together on the periphery of the enclosures. The population for the whole of Great Zimbabwe during its heyday is estimated at between 10 000 and 18 000. Within the Valley Enclosures are the remains of dhaka huts, platforms and small towers.
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The Great Enclosure: This is the largest single ancient structure south of the Sahara.
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The perimeter wall is 820 feet in circumference and 36 feet high, and it is estimated that nearly a million granite blocks were used in its construction. The roughly oval-shaped structure encloses an area 262 feet by 180 feet and contains a number of stone features, including the Conical Tower.

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The inner wall of this passage was originally built as the perimeter wall; the massive outer wall was constructed later, surmounted by monoliths and decorated with two courses of chevron pattern high up on the external face in the area of the Conical Tower.
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Well that was it for now...you know what happens next in Bulawayo already....so next post is Rhinos for sure!
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Posted by Kelly Rose 15:44 Archived in Zimbabwe Tagged zimbabwe great_zimbabwe_ruins Comments (1)

Truck, tent, truck, tent, mall, truck, shop rite, truck...

One night in Zambia, One Hour in Harare, Bulawayo and a Birthday!

August 5th
On the road again... And again and again....
I'm going to be honest, I can remember each of the campsites we were at but besides that the days, where we were and what mall/Shoprite/coffees shops we stopped at in between all start to blend together... so here is what Thom kept track of in his journal so we'll just go with that. Not that there was very much to report on anyway...but things do get better after this post so stay tuned!

5:36 AM and we are pulling out of camp!
Kelly took a Benadryl as we were warned that it would be a LONG day.
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12:50 PM back on the road again after a "bush toilet" break - 3 hours to the next stop - a MALL!?!?!?!? Or rather to our great surprise a Shoprite!!!
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What?

We didn't come to Africa to go to a mall ... But I sure do appreciate the ATM and selection of wines to stock up on with my "Italian Ladies Wine Club"
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Anyway we stop for lunch. Several of our group are expressing their feelings about the amount of travel time spent on the truck in the heat of the day, the fact that there is nothing to do or see on the way and the "grind" of the trekking...
Let's just say we are not the only ones beginning to wonder what we read when we read the Trip Notes for this vacation!
Our stop is for about 45 minutes and then back on the truck...
30 minutes more and we arrive at our campsite for yet another ONE NIGHT STAY! We pass random zebra as we enter the campgrounds. (Ha ha do you like how spoiled we got from the Serengeti and Crater that now we just refer to the zebra as if I saw some deer on the side of the road in Pennsylvania.) After dinner some of us go to the bar which was a pretty cool structure for a few beers. The drinks are CHEAP - 10 Kwacha ( $1.60 US). Rose had told us to spend all of our Zambian Kwacha since our next destination, Zimbabwe did not accept them so we did - no worries Thom still had enough to buy several beers, and tomorrow we would be able to get more money in Zimbabwe -...aka- US DOLLARS. After drinks bed - another early start ahead.

Wednesday August 6th
We've been up since 4 AM,
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...already we have eaten two meals and several snacks (one meal on the truck) and we have crossed the border into Zimbabwe.

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Snoozing and reading fill my time (Thom who never reads is now reading his second book on this journey - get the picture?)... We had a 5 AM breakfast and we broke camp around 5:30. We would have left earlier but someone (Thom) lost his sunglasses. He thought they were on his head and he dropped them while boarding the truck. We would come to find out that they were actually rolled up in our stowed tent when we unpack and set up in the next site. Bonus, magically they didn't get crushed!
It will take 3 hours to get to the border crossing and then another 4 - 5 hours minimum to get to Harare, the Capitol of Zimbabwe where we might get a chance to walk around before moving on to our camp for yet another one night stay. Wahoo!!!!!
Not much to see on the way. The truck is hot, we are tired, stiff, bored, and really sweaty! Oh wait there is one of the world's largest rivers (Kind of dry though)...
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Oh too late, no time to stop and look. No matter, we're going to get to Harare where we might get to walk around and maybe see some city traffic - We're really getting tired of this!
Harare was kind of a let down too as we had maybe and hour or so to walk around but not much to do or see. The trip notes said to check out the National Museum but it was closed and to see some garden but Rose said you would have to take a taxi and it was 30 min away...ok then. It seemed like a real business type of city from what we gathered in the small time we were there. Tall skyscraper type buildings and men in business suites.
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Well with so many options to choose from (said sarcastically) Nancy, Alana, Thom and I decided to do what any bored person kept in a cage would do with the first chance of freedom - find a bar.
We go to what is actually a hotel and step downstairs to the bar only to have every person there turn and stare at us. And why shouldn't they? All the local men at the bar were dressed in suits with collared shirts and ties... and here come the dirty white backpackers in their bandanas and kaki hiker pants...ha ha ha! But there was no problem and everyone was actually very friendly or at least kept their comment to a language I couldn't understand. We had one drink and got the scuzziest, most worn down American two dollar bill I have ever seen as change. Yay!

Thursday August 7th
More of the same - get up early, pack and go, another LONG day on the truck. Get to the next site. Tomorrow is Thom's birthday!!!

August 8th - My Birthday!!!
We slept in today maybe we left around 7:00??? - we only have a 6 hour ride.
While at a rest stop Thom takes some photos - SLICE STOP.
Pizza Slice (makes sense)
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Slice Groceries (ok I'll buy that)
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Chicken Slice (hmmm)
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Creamy Slice (now you're pushing it a bit I think)
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Police Slice Base (!?!?!?!)
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Thom also took photos of two busses that were loaded to the sky.
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They can load the busses that way since there are no bridges to go under in this area - pretty wild. Can you imagine trying that at home?

Eventually we made it to Bulawayo. We stopped first briefly in Bulawayo to get some supplies and I got a Birthday card for Thom for everyone to sign (I opted for the Rainbows and Hearts option over the Christmas card)
Then to camp to set up, a little SLICE of paradise - no really - Burke's Paradise - really nice!!!
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After lunch the owner, Adam gives us the 411 and then we go into town. Bulawayo is a nice small town, rather modern and filled with some comfy amenities.
Once there we have 3 hours to browse. Thom, Christine, Nancy and I go to the Cairo To Cape Town Bar for a birthday libation.
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Next we visit the Cultural Arts Center, where we are charmed by the curator and purchase a few items.
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Then off to the National Gallery.
Not a large place but FINALLY, a place that has original art work!!! Thom had been looking for some since we began. Now don't get me wrong, cultural art forms are lovely but...
Every town has the same touristy sHtuff!!! Not here. Original works, done in unique styles.
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Thom and Christine tour the museum while Cool Aussie Nancy and I head to the local markets in search of a jumper (also known by us Americans as a Sweat Shirt...lol)
Thom treats himself to a nice print (HAPPY BIRTHDAY) and has a great conversation with the artist and a few of his fellow artisans. So happy for him that his Birthday landed on this day and not one spent entirely on the truck!
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At 5 PM we meet the others and head back to camp.
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Back at camp Thom sat watching the sunset, while frogs serenade.
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I went off to use the WiFi and soon after the sun sets it is dinner time.
Thom gets a balloon decorated chair waiting for him in honor of his birthday.
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We ate dinner, had birthday cake, the group sang and wished him Happy Birthday!
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...and after all of that Bob sang an original song he wrote for Christine in honor of their anniversary which would come tomorrow. It was a beautiful evening.
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Tonight we get to sleep in a bit. 8 o'clock breakfast and then off to see some Rhinos!!!

Posted by Kelly Rose 11:20 Comments (1)

The Road to HELL....oops I mean Lake Malawi

On the road to HELL

It's dark, we wake, breakdown camp and load onto the truck - oh - NO BREAKFAST!!!! That will come later...
Once on the bus I (and most it seems) go right back to sleep! A few hours later we stop - bathroom break and a breakfast. Back on the bus and the road, a few hours more and we stop for gas, another hour we stop for a roadside lunch and bush toilet. A few locals show up to watch our every move - they must think we have strange habits as we eat, wash dishes and then flap our dishes like geese flying to better climes in order to dry them before we reload EVERYTHING that we just unloaded only to then board and get back on the road.

3 more hours!!! And we reach our camp site - NOT our final destination!
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Along the way we go through a climate and environment change...
We have now climbed back up into the mountain region.
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We pass zebra, giraffe, elephant (some saw buffalo, gazelles and impala - I didn't, I was asleep!) and I think at the highest elevations some saw numerous baboons.
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Finally, we arrive at our campsite around 5 PM. After setting up our tents, we shower and meet at the bar
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for a pre-dinner drink. Again after dinner, Rose tells us what to anticipate for tomorrow...
Another early rise (4:45 AM), load the truck, breakfast by 5:30 and 6 AM departure. She explains that we will be en route for yet another 10 - 12 hours as we cross the border into Malawi. After dinner we walk back to the bar
where some have brownies and hot chocolate made with an African liquor called Amarula. Thom is tired and a cranky so he heads to bed early.

Up EARLY (4:50 AM)...

After breaking down and packing up AGAIN - simple breakfast - coffee / tea and oatmeal (if you want) and back on the road!
As we travel more of the same, snooze, more of the same, snooze, boredom and still more of the same!
Although this was interesting:
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Reminds me of India, which at this point of the trip I was missing dearly!!!

Besides that (which I think was from this part of the journey but I could be wrong and therefore I am just adding that to make this part of the blog more interesting for you) our pace is such that we don't even stop for pictures of land changes, rivers, wildlife - we stop for NOTHING!
It all takes it's toll and it turns out to be yet another LONG day! In the end the commute could have been worse. We sat at a table today across from the Canadians and at times we were able to "connect with them on various topics", however the amount of time and lack of space can have (and did) it's toll.
Back to that later.

For now we'll skip to finally reaching our first camp at lake Malawi.
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Lake Malawi is an African Great Lake and the third largest and second deepest lake in Africa, it is also the ninth largest in the world.
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We take a walk to the beach and some teenage boys hawk us to buy their wood carvings calling themselves some ridiculous names and pretending to know our guides so we politely (as much as you can) go back to the campground and hangout with our group at the bar.
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While really nice we are only here for one night before we leave again for another campground at Lake Malawi. Yes... More driving yay!
Here is a better view of Lake Malawi taken while we were driving at some point in the truck. It really looks like an Ocean as most Great Lakes do...

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Upon arrival to our new site it is so crowded and the tenting area is packed so we scurry to upgrade to better accommodations and "stretch out" / reorganize. Our lodging was right on the beach and only cost $46 US for two nights - not bad at all!!!
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Humble though they may be, the view was wonderful and the glass-less windows and ceiling fan offered a luscious breeze at night for pleasant sleeping. But first things is first - LAUNDRY!!!! We needed to get this done so we can hang it to dry. So we get out the basins and find the hose with water and do it African Style.

Our first night was very nice. We had a great meal prepared by Henly, pork - which Kelly not only tried but liked! Many of us hung out and drank, washing away the aches and sores from the long two day commute. Before bed we walked out on the beach to a campfire where some locals were drumming. The fire was nice and Kelly jumped in with the drumming but after a time (and their request for money) we headed back to our rooms for a good night's rest.
We had a friend waiting...
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Sunday morning it is peaceful so we decide to hop off our little deck and go for a walk.
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The hotel had two chaperones that followed us and took us around to see the sites (they didn't ask for money):
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Later we join Bob and Christine for coffee at the cafe before our group's scheduled breakfast. A nice breakfast (as usual - except on long travel days) and it's time for some heavy duty RELAXING!
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Kelly and I grab our books and two hammocks.
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Nap, read, nap, read some more, nap and lazily stare at the water and white sand until lunchtime.
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No swimming though. I mean it wasn't super hot and the water was rough but even if it hadn't been, Lake Malawi is known for having certain types of snails that are carriers of a parasite. Bilharzia is caused by a parasitic worm (schistomes) with a smart life cycle. So while others will tell you it is fine as long as the water is not stagnant, Thom and I went into this knowing we just weren't going to take any chances either way. Especailly after the whole Ganges River thing in India...ha ha ha!

A bit more relaxing and then Bob and I (Thom) share a stout as he shows me pictures of his art work and some of the housing projects they've done - nice time spent with a nice man. Little did I know that this was the beginning of the end of a totally pleasant day!

The group starts to assemble in the lounging area while waiting for out dinner. Kelly and the "Italian Ladies Club" drink wine that they had purchase earlier at road stops, I had two stouts (this is important to note because of what is about to come after dinner, which occurred out of TOTAL frustration NOT alcohol). Dinner was delicious - T-bone steaks!!! Sam grilled the steaks to perfection on an open fire. They were accompanied by lentils, garlic sauce and warmed cabbage slaw - DELICIOUS!

After dinner... Well that was another story and let's just say that many on the trip had been "tip toeing" around the Canadians, trying politely to deal with their irritating ways until unfortunately they picked Kelly to have words...
AND then persistently went to Thom to try and drag him into it. I'm not going to get into the unpleasant details of every word spoken here that but it ended like this: (read this part silently or skip if children are around...lol)

I (Thom) tell her that she needs to talk to Kelly if she has a problem and that I want out of the situation.
She is relentless so I tell her that I'm done and if she doesn't leave it alone I won't be able to remain very pleasant - she steps right up and into my grill and says "oh yeah?"...
Game on!!!
Thom: " If you have a problem with Kelly, you need to talk to her and if you can't do that then you need to back off or GO F$%* YOURSELF!"

Part of me (Thom) still can't believe I said that to her...
Another part of me thought that it was LONG overdue!!!

In any event, it prompted the attention of the rest of the group - BREAK TIME!!!
We all go our separate ways, until later we talk with "cool Aussie Nancy" and decide to go back to the gathering area and rejoin the others who are hanging out. Not our best night to say the least.

The next morning we woke early and saw the most amazing sunrise....
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Even though we had been waking at such ungodly hours to drive on the truck we hadn't seen too many really pretty sunrises like this before.
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My Favorite:
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Well we need to have breakfast and get back on the truck for some more long days...this should be VERY INTERESTING!!!

Posted by Kelly Rose 10:34 Archived in Malawi Comments (1)

Back To Dar Es Salaam...

Zanzibar - back in Stone Town Again

Breakfast at 7:30, packed and ready to go we meet our group in the reception area at 9 AM.

Back on the bus and we head back to Stone Town. Once there we have about an hour and a half before we must board the ferry back to Dar Es Salaam. I go into town in search of an ATM and then meet up with Kelly at the Dispensary where we order food for the trip on the ferry and take advantage of the free WiFi.

Eventually it is time to board the ferry. This time Kelly and I decide NOT to check our backpacks - we "slip by" our "friend" and find our seats. The ride back is VERY rough. Pure 90 mins of agony. You'll be glad there are no pictures for this brief entry in a moment. They made some announcement before we left the port about rough waters and an apology but we weren't really expecting how bad it was about to get. The air conditioning wasn't working so everyone is clammy and people started getting ill. Soon the the sights, smells and sounds of sea sick passengers fill the cabin. Kelly is fighting to battle her dizziness and the smell. Eventually she finds the strength to stand and goes above to ride it out, I stay with the bags. One woman even passes out FLAT on the deck! Finally we made it, and the next ferry ride was not only shorter, it was smoother as well! Once in port we are met by Sam and our Intrepid truck / bus. We board and Sam takes us back to the camp grounds in Dar Es Salaam. Ramadan has ended and the streets are filled with many happy celebrating locals colorfully dressed, dancing and singing.

Back at the camp grounds we relax and have a few drinks while enjoying the party goers on the beach before dinner. At dinner Rose tells us about the next morning's and the next few day's plan...
4 AM wake up
4:30 AM breakfast
5 AM departure
After dinner and chores - early to bed - it's going to get interesting tomorrow morning!

Posted by Kelly Rose 08:59 Archived in Tanzania Comments (1)

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