vrijdag 27 juli 2012
It was quite a shock to arrive at the Congo - Zambia border, suddenly we were back into civilisation as we entered the newly build and very modern building with at least 8 desks. It was so new that they didn't have signs put up yet so we went from desk to desk to get all the formalities done, making sure we had all the right paperwork and payed all the taxes. So far we didn't bother too much, as we crossed borders and complete countries without even a visa or laisser passez, but something told us this was going to be different, with modern and educated police to fine us for every mistake. That night, after looking in amazement at all the modern shops and restaurants on the perfect asfalt road, we cooked up a celebratory dinner as next morning the group would split up. We travelled together for 4 weeks but now I would go faster and drive to Lusaka on my own. Lusaka was not too crowdy, modern but still definately African and I enjoyed 2 days at a backpackers drinking Hunters cider and updating the blog on the excellent wifi. Then Regis picked me up to make the 2 days drive towards Livingstone. I wasn't going to spend too much time in Zambia, but one thing here is a real must see, Victoria falls are worth every penny the 20 dollar entrance. We scouted the city of Livingstone for cheap accomodation and finaly found a free place at the Rapid 14 campsite of Overland Missions close to the falls. As for the falls inself, just look at the pictures.
That same day, when driving on the road towards the border with Namibia, which is going through the national park, I saw my first big wild animal on this trip when Regis spotted a giraffe in the bush.
Later that day, just arriving in Namibia, Regis blew the turbo on his landcruiser, forcing us to stay 2 days in the border town of Katima Mulilo, where I went on a (chinese) shopping spree. I desperately needed some warmer clothing cause by now, in the South and in the middle of winter, nights were very cold, so cold in fact that I lost all interest in camping. Waking up at 4 o'clock in the night in the freezing cold is not what I had in mind when I set of to Africa. Setting of too early was no fun either, I preferred to wait till 10, when the sun was high enough in the sky to generate some heat. With my clock still on congo time I foulishly miscalculated one morning, thinking it was 6.15, I actually set of at 5.15 in pitch black darkness and soon found myself shivering and was forced to put on all my gear, including the rain overall.
Luckily I spotted a bushfire on which I could warm myself but one hour later I was so cold again I was thinking of starting another bushfire.
Regis split up to welcome his Chinese girlfriend May who was coming over for a holiday and I speeded up towards Swakopmund, where my girlfriend Anita was waiting for me to arrive for 4 weeks now, she crossed Angola in just 4 days as we went on the DRC detour and I was anxious to see her again.
It got even colder closer to Swakopmund and the desertlike surroundings reminded me of Mauritania, but soon I was welcomed warmly by Anita and her family. The next weeks I will check out the culture rich city and go on a trip to the Etosha national park and take my time planning my future, Europe or Africa...