We’ll cover almost 10,000 km by the time we arrive in Nairobi so many of our days will consist of a lot of driving. By Day 4, this idea sinks in and we settle back into the seats of our truckbus.
I’ve been reading (and by reading, I mean listening to on my iPod) Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela. Today, I get to the start of apartheid. The terms comes from the Afrikaans word “apartness” and the National Party in South Africa used the idea of racial segregation (separate but not equal) to brutally suppress its non-white citizens. I’m struck by how late in the last century this policy started and by how long it lasted. And I’m embarrassed by how little I knew about apartheid before I started reading the book. Note to self: read more.
Nature seems to take a different approach. I noticed on our safari through Kruger National Park that many animals all hang out together. The herds mingle when they’re eating and often use the same tree for shade. They stick together because there’s strength in numbers. They don’t care if you’re a zebra or a waterbuck. The circle of life is better with company. Maybe people just forgot how this works.
Our group has started to meld a little more. Over beers and a lovely barbecue prepared by Barry and our guide Gideon, we joked about the safari spoof pictures Chloe and Amanda took during our hike through the high grass. We also crack up over the idea of making a video along the same lines but we never get the chance.
Animals are extremely loud in the morning. That is the one undeniable fact that I’ve taken away from all the camping we’ve done over the last year. (True up to this point, I’ve only camped for seven nights the whole year but that’s more than I’ve done any year of my life so it almost makes me feel like an expert.) In Peru, the donkeys next to our Inca Trail camp were extremely loud at 3am. (Serious, when do donkey’s sleep?) In South Africa, the peacocks are the loud mouths. Before this morning, I don’t think I’ve ever heard a peep from a peacock. But apparently they do squawk, particularly before sunrise.
We’ve got another long drive head of us today…