So here we are in our first Game Park. Well, first for me in over 40 years because I once lived just outside Nairobi, Kenya so we were lucky enough to have regular visits to game parks – long before they were interlaced with good roads and cluttered with tour groups – and Bruce has already seen a fair bit of game because he’s been here in S.A. for a month longer than me on this trip.
We are to stay here in the Karoo National Park for two nights so, following a quick breakfast we jumped into the jolly old people-mobile and set out on a ‘Game Drive’ for several hours. Still no sign of any lions or rhino but we did see a steenbok, which is apparently a rare sighting, plus more red hartebeest, ostrich, a pair of black eagles, both Mountain and Burchell’s zebra (they have different striping on their butts) and kudu.
It started to rain late in the day – pretty heavy rain – which is the first rain for weeks. (I know, I know – it’s really needed here, but why can’t it just wait until MY holiday is over?) Still, at least it’s still warm-ish. Can’t say I’ve been really hot here yet though – I guess Fall really is coming in. Because of the rain we ended up both cooking and eating our dinner in the communal kitchen – they have excellent facilities in these campsites – and we didn’t go for an evening game drive.
This was the day to really put in some driving. We had an excellent breakfast at a Wimpy’s (haven’t been to one of those since I was a kid in England and at that time all they served up were MacDonald-like burgers). They do really good coffee, too.
Excellent highways, but from what I could see it looked like expensive tolls along the route. Also, incredibly heavy rains again en route – apparently ‘tis the Season: I just missed summer. We saw two really bad motor vehicle accidents, both involving semi-trailer trucks and cars. At the second accident I doubt very much – from the condition of the car – that anyone could have survived and the attending ambulances appeared to be in no hurry. It’s very sobering.
We did about 800 Kms from the Karoo to Johannesburg where first we dropped off Lucia and Andre at their home, then we headed to the home of Charles and Anschu’s son, Charles. What a lovely home (used to belong to the senior Charles & wife before younger Charles and wife took it on) on a hill overlooking the City of Johannesburg. Had a very pleasant night there – wonderful hospitality – but went to bed fairly quickly having put in such a long day of driving.