Hoppit Hobbit

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January 25th 2010
Published: January 25th 2010
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At Chinguni Hills Liwonde
Ouch! I’m sitting watching the opening of the Cameroon v Egypt match in Lusaka, Zambia (Zambia up next tonight against Nigeria) with a very gammy foot. Yikes, think I got to a doctor just in the nick of time, well, you know, to take the drugs and still be able to continue my travels. I’m off tomorrow for Livingstone and The Smoke That Thunders, so I’m stoked - I really can’t wait to see it. Having done the 10 hour bus journey yesterday (which followed a four hour drive from South Luangua to Chipata) with this horrid swollen ugly foot, I’ve decided to bite the Credit Card bullet for the first time on the trip and get a flight the rest of the way tomorrow… I think it was partly the influence of ‘The American’ that has got me spending more in the last week than in any of the previous months. I decided, I can throw money this particular ‘time problem’ and it will go away… (here’s hoping!)

The American was a bit to me what ‘The Texan’ was to Liz Gilbert in Eat, Pray Love,… a point blank reminder of Western ways. Even though this U.S. AID security
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Going down the Hippo track on the canoe safari
pro had been all over the world in the worst situations, he travelled as fresh as a daisy. Maybe it was because Malawi is a veritable holiday by comparison to most of his other visits. Either way, Chris kindly offered a lift from Liwonde NP to Lilongwe with a trip back to Cape Maclear en route thrown in, and we really had it large. I must just try and block from the memory that the hired Land Cruiser’s snorkel made a whistling sound that attracted one particular breed of local birdlife directly into our path. A couple more roadkill I’m afraid, euch. And other stories…

The beginning and end of the drive were my two favourite National Parks so far: Liwonde NP, Malawi and South Luangua NP, Zambia. Liwonde was home to J.R.R. Tolkien in his youth when his father was a missionary there. The place is full of Ents and Eagles and the Shire and Mordor. The scenery is awesome and this is one of the last parks to offer a canoe safari amongst the Hippos and Crocs. South Luangua is bursting with wildlife, and holds light like none of the other parks I’ve visited. It feels like
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Jaunty hat
it’s on high ground. Over the years the massive elephant population has damaged many of the trees resulting in huge areas of tree ghosts wading through savannas and providing scaffold for green construction around the rivers and roads. Brilliant.

But I am not recounting all the details this time… Some stories have to be saved for my return! I’m still meeting loads of cool people and enjoying the trip ‘big time’. After this match I am going back to the cheapest clean hotel in Lusaka - I should say Motel, where all the truckers stay, and tomorrow is the start of ‘someone else planning’ when I take up an overland truck for the journey down to Cape Town. I’m not sure how much I’ll be able to update. Just hope I don’t get stuck with a bunch of losers… ;o)

Love and hugs
Limping Nik x

Additional photos below
Photos: 12, Displayed: 12


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Floaating past the lilies
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four headed zebra
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me with more eles

25th January 2010

Hey Nikki, sorry to hear about the foot :-( I guess it must look a bit like a hobbits very large feet - minus the other foot and the hair of course :-P. Can feel the energy and enthusiasm coming from your writing and your photos!! You are clearly having fun :-) x
26th January 2010

I love it that you went to the Shire ;) !! Take care of that foot my girlie girl... xxxxxx
27th January 2010

quick hello
Hi Nikki, I sometimes quickly check your blog mainly the amazing photos, but never manage to read everything or write any message to you (even now the kids are screeming around). I really envy you your adventure. I hope you are enjoying this wonderful travel. Recover soon, thinking of you Lenka

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