Blogs from Africa - page 17

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Africa » South Africa » Gauteng » Johannesburg February 22nd 2014

Sleepy eyed and full of surprisingly delicious free South African plane wine we emerged full of excitement at OR Tambo airport. Jumping in an official airport taxi we took off for our home for 4 weeks - Swanage in Sandringham. We'd heard that 1/7 drivers in Jo'berg at any one time are drunk...and it certainly seemed like it!! People swerving in and out of lanes, emergency breaking and tooting galore!! Twenty minutes later we'd arrived...in completely the wrong neighbourhood! Our taxi driver, whilst nice enough, assured us that he hadn't quite got the best grasp of the city yet! Rolling his sleeves up Ed took the mantle (and the map!) and we headed towards Victoria avenue. Finally arriving in our neighbourhood, we couldn't help but stare out the window...not even cut the rope could distract us!! ... read more
Our friendly neighbourhood policemen
Top security...
Room with a view...

Africa » South Africa » Gauteng » Johannesburg February 22nd 2014

On Friday, February 17thwe began our adventure and before I had even left Gothenburg, the first hiccup of the trip had manifested. My itinerary would had me flying from Gothenburg to Stockholm with Norwegian Air and then meeting Phil at the airport in Stockholm and connecting to an Ethiopian Airlines flight to Addis Ababa and subsequently Johannesburg. However, on the morning of our departure, an Ethiopian Airlines from Addis Ababa to Rome was hijacked by the flight’s co-pilot, who locked the pilot out of the cockpit when he left to go to the bathroom and then took the plane to Geneva where he climbed out of the cockpit window and surrendered himself to authorities in hopes of claiming asylum. This sequence of events meant that there were disrupted Ethiopian Airlines passengers to accommodate and so our ... read more
Made it to Addis but missed our connection
Phil, Nicky Oppenheimer and I
They stuffed us into a hotel bus to get us to the hotel.

Africa » Namibia February 21st 2014

Before going to Namibia, I had no idea what to expect exactly; it was not even my choice to go there at first. Maybe, that’s the reason why I got even more amazed by this country. This country is just a nature paradise. In my whole life, I have already visited 24 countries, but I can for sure say that Namibia is the most beautiful country I visited so far!! Let me explain why now. Firstly, this country is not densely populated at all, so most of the country will only be natural landscapes. For such a nature lover as I am while I am travelling, it was just perfect! Secondly, you have to imagine that you will see wild animals wandering freely everywhere. Seeing such wild animals amazed me every time I was seeing them. ... read more
Fish River Canyon
First zebras near the road
On my way to Ketmanshoop at the back of a vehicle ;)

Africa » Tanzania » North » Arusha » Arusha City February 21st 2014

Our second week of work and everything is beginning to feel easier. I get blisters cutting vegetables. My legs stretch into a crouch better, although Momma Johanna ( the cook and cleaner for the school) makes me take the bucket to sit on half the time. I am beginning to learn student names and I am understanding the rhythm of everything much better. The schooling here is very traditional, with lots of copying, and echo back chanting. Much of it is too difficult for the little ones, and there are not enough people to go around to help students one on one. I watch their boredom and restlessness grow and know that any of my answers to help will not be accepted or space requirements mean that it is just not possible. I can get to ... read more
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Africa » Tanzania » North » Arusha » Arusha City February 21st 2014

This weekend was slow. I caught a cold and moved at a snails pace. We went to town to use wifi and prepare for a hike that we planned on Sunday, but Sunday morning the rains never stopped and we ended up reading and Jacob playing catch up. It's been nice to lie still, let my body fight the cold and listen to the bleat of goats, lowing of cattle and songs of the birds out the window. We do have a major hike/safari planned for next weekend with guides and porters and everything. I'm excited. This week the teachers must give exams to the children, even those who are 3 and 4. It means that Jacob has less to do, but I can help with marking and giving reading tests. Last week, I told Isaac ... read more
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Africa » South Africa » Mpumalanga » Kruger National Park February 20th 2014

We drove into Punda Maria camp and missed the sign that said no caravans so drove right up to the reception, realised there was nowhere to turn round so had to keep going into the staff quarters to do a three point turn. I guess a little more practice would be useful. Back down in the camp site and we found a lovely level patch right on the fence with tall trees overhead ideal for bush babies and owls, this was supposed to be a top birding spot. We set up camp quickly, we do the whole lot in under half an hour now, and went out for an evening drive. Ten minutes into the loop and it started to rain lightly, thinking it wouldn't be much we kept on going hoping it would stop. About ... read more

Africa » Kenya » Western Province February 20th 2014

Well, that wasn't so bad! I now have two bulging cases each weighing the permitted 50 lb. We solved the problem of getting both to the Airport, but in a sad way. Barbara Robinson's mother's condition was deteriorating rapidly and they left on Tuesday evening for Toronto. Her mother has since died, and Barbara, our condolences to you and your family. Malcolm R. is in Toronto with her and he generously offered to take one case in their car and he will deliver it to my hotel on the airport strip on Saturday morning before I leave for my plane. The other case travels with me on Megabus. God works things out so perfectly; thank you Lord. And,Barbara, so sad for you and your family. I am going to travel on Ethiopian Airways. On Tuesday morning ... read more

Africa » South Africa » Mpumalanga » Kruger National Park February 19th 2014

Next stop was Tsendze bush camp. This was about as different as it was possible to get from Crocodile Bridge. The camp is away from the main Mopani Camp and is only for campers. There is no electricity, shop, pool or restaurant but there is lovely individual sites hidden in the bush, peace and quiet, lovely ablutions complete with an outdoor shower which was much nicer than trying to shower in the dark with all the spiders and mozzies as we normally do. There was a decent kitchen with hot water and solar lighting. And to top it all the game ranger in charge came round to chat to us, show us where the paradise flycatcher has her nest and to show us his photos of a nightjar he had just taken and chat in general ... read more

Africa » Ethiopia » Addis Ababa Region » Addis Ababa February 18th 2014

In the summer of 2012, I took Ethiopian Airlines to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and on to Johannesburg, South Africa, roundtrip. The flight from Washington Dulles is non stop to Addis (then on to Jo-burg). But the return flight from Addis is scheduled to stop in Rome, for refueling, and to let passengers off, if any. We refueled on the tarmac, never let anyone off, and proceeded to Washington Dulles after about 30 minutes on the ground. The reason for the extra stop on the way back is simply the thin air in Addis, forcing the plane to carry less fuel for the takeoff than its nonstop that leaves Dulles. This is the same plane and flight that was hijacked yesterday. Read this: Rome-bound passenger jet was "forced to proceed" to Geneva early Monday when its co-pilot ... read more

Africa » Ghana » Central » Cape Coast February 16th 2014

In my first blog I forgot to write about the language. English is widely spoken, since Ghana was a British colony. Besides, the country has MANY different languages but the most spoken language is "Akan". I left Accra and went to Cape Coast. Getting there was an ordeal! Benjamin went with me so I could take the tro-tro (local small bus) to the Cape Coast station and from there continue to Cape Coast. First the buses wouldn’t pass, or they were full. And it was warm! Then I finally got into the tro-tro to the station. Here I needed to walk just a little bit to go where the buses depart from. The station is as chaotic as it gets, pffff! Once I found the Cape Coast bus, I bought a ticket, paid extra for my ... read more
Making boats in the beach in Elmina
A local woman in Elmina
Elmina




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