Published: August 8th 2012August 8th 2012
Just when I thought all travel had perished, I suddenly find myself in a place I only dreamed of in movies, television shows and the World Book Encylopedia...Africa! Specifically, Zimbabwe at the moment close to the famed Victoria Falls. Zimbabwe shares the Falls with its counterpart, Zambia so the two countries are divided by this magnificent force of nature just as Canada and the United States are separated by the great Niagara. Statistically speaking, Victoria Falls are the highest and widest falls compared to Niagara Falls although the latter produces the greatest volume and force of water in comparision.
But enough of these Olympian comparisons...wandering amongst the Falls here was very exciting. Areas are not barricaded in any way, shape or form and the drop is tremendous to say the least. A few photo ops were rather dicey and required some fancy footwork but the results were well worth it. The mist of the falls is so predominant that as you walk you must shield your camera and your eyes by these sudden clouds of "smoke" and "thunder" which is the original wording of the Falls, before the famous missionary, Dr. Livingstone stumbled upon them and being a loyalist, named
them after his beloved Queen.
What intrigues me the most here is the landscape. It is "winter" here...the days are lovely and warm, but the mornings are very brisk and chilly...thank goodness for last minute afterthoughts when I threw my down jacket into my luggage!!! The sky is a clear, crystal blue each day and this only goes to highlight the golden hues of the various grasses and trees that encompass this part of Zimbabwe. This is known as the dry season, hence the immense dryness everywhere and of course this is to our advantage as travellers because this is the best season for viewing wildlife as watering holes are sparse.
And viewing animals I have done...indeed! In the short space of time of being here, I have seen so many different animals in the wild...zebras, crocodiles, giraffes, the almighty hippo, a very suspicious rhino (I had to dive into the jeep when it looked as if it was about to charge us!...(oh what we National-Geographic-photographer-wannabees will go through!)...with many more to follow. I have always loved animals since childhood and as a teacher, it is always a guaranteed attention-grabber in the classroom. How fortunate I am to
see them walking about in their own environs...nibbling at the vegetation, lazing in the sun or just staring at me from a distance with a wary and suspicious eye. As I wander around watching THEM, I cannot help but to wonder what is WHO is watching me that I have yet to discover!!!
I am loving my ride on the "Ark" and only hope that some of my photos will provide you with the same thrills and respect for the wild kingdom that I have achieved in such a short time. More to follow as we fly out tomorrow afternoon and head to South Africa for five days in Kruger National Park. I'm excited as a child...so nice to know that the little boy in me wasn't so lost after all!!!
There are more photos below