Caprivi Strip, 2014 Part 33

by david on June 1, 2015

Headed Home

                Today needed an early start, and that is exactly what we gave it. We were up at 5:00 and on the road by 6:00. Today’s travel plus three more would be required for us to get home. Once started, we wanted as few delays as possible so we wanted to make across the border crossings before they got too busy. The Zim border crossing was practically deserted so we breezed right through. The line of tractor trailers was still there (I hope they were not the same ones) and had drawn the attention of a group of baboons. These pests were trying to get into anything and everything they could. I am not a fan of these critters anyway and could not help but think about how much fun a BB rifle would afford me at the moment. No time to pay too much attention to the baboons as we still had another border to cross. Getting into Botswana was no problem either. There was no traffic in Kasane and the entrance to Chobe Park was upon us before we knew it. We stopped there to let them know we were driving through and away we went. The only hiccup in the whole thing was one very ticked-off elephant we stopped to look at. It seemed she wanted to cross the road and we were blocking her way. We sorted it out by driving away and leaving her to her own pace. Out of Botswana and back into Namibia went smoothly and we were back at Camp Chobe in time for breakfast. The trip back took a full hour and forty-five minutes less than the trip going.

After breakfast we retrieved Johnas and started the 70k drive back to Katima. When planning the trip, we decided to allow for an extra day in case of any type of delay. Since it was not needed, we would now spend one more night at the Fish Eagles Nest.   We arrived there about 11:00 and were greeted by the host for a second time on this trip. Byron pulled in right behind us with our firearms and the bags we did not need in Vic Falls. Somehow, all of a sudden, our trip was actually over. Byron had to get back to work and Johann was anxious to get started on the two days’ driving required for them to get back home. In the blink of an eye, the goodbyes were all said and we found ourselves alone, with a whole afternoon and evening ahead of us. We decided to pass the time by repacking our bags to make sure everything was as the airlines wanted and in the best position possible to survive the trip home.

Packing to go home was a time of mixed emotions for me. I was saddened the trip is over and it would be a long time before I saw my friends again. I was happy there were plenty of new memories still fresh and vivid. I was sad that there was a long and tiring trip ahead (tomorrow’s flight to Windhoek, an overnight in Windhoek, a flight from Windhoek to Johannesburg, a 15 hour flight from Johannesburg to Atlanta, customs, a flight from Atlanta, to Raleigh, and a 45-minute drive home). On the bright side, I had two and a half days to daydream about and plan my next trip.

One little side note here. We went to a nice restaurant on our last night in Namibia. The AM Weinberg was charming and the food was very good. The restaurant itself is in an old farmhouse/vineyard, and the place just oozes charm. The wine cellar was well stocked and service was good. If you are in Windhoek and the locals still say this is the place to go (nothing ever stays the same in Africa), give it a try. We certainly enjoyed it.


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