Lion Around

Trip Start Aug 22, 2012
1
59
63
Trip End Jun 16, 2013


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Where I stayed

Flag of South Africa  , Eastern Cape,
Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Oh! - how I love the coast! Wilderness is a bohemian town set above a long, beautiful beach along the Garden Route of South Africa. We settled into our lodge high above the beach then went for a deliciously long walk on the never-ending beach with waves 7-deep cresting in the bay. Searching for something interesting for dinner, we stumbled upon a Friday night market in the town centre with a pathway of booths selling food, some live folk music playing and a hopping outdoor bar that boasted the best ribs anywhere. Ah, but I had those in Kratie, Combodia…how could they have them here in Wilderness, South Africa?

Given the bar was so busy, we asked a man and his young son if we could join them at their table. They graciously invited us to sit down and we had an informative conversation with Dennis and JC (while eating ribs that were great but did not beat the Cambodian ones). We are very curious about South African politics and history, particularly now the country is 20 years post-apartheid. By chatting with the locals and observing we are beginning to get a sense of things. Frankly, we are surprised at how separate the country remains and understand that change takes time.

Our Saturday felt like one we might have at home – a slow start, we headed to the next town's farm market where they sold, among other things, French gourmet quiches, quilted placemats, heavy German bread and just about anything you might find in a farm market in Nova Scotia. We sat in the sun, munching on local delights and watched the families enjoy themselves. The remainder of the day was spent hiking to a waterfall.

Returning inland, our next stop was a gorgeous spot on a citrus farm alongside a river with gardens that were meticulously kept. We had our own cabin with a little kitchen and a deck overlooking the river. The reason we came to this part of the country was to explore Addo Elephant Park but decided to first go to Schotia private game reserve. What a great choice as we had eye-to-eye encounters with mating male and female lions
, two white rhinos and a group of six 21-month old lions and their mom/aunt (as the other mom was busy). It was an exciting day!

The following day we did a a self-drive game drive in Addo. Those moments when that huge male elephant pressed his ears forward then while approaching our tiny car was shaking his head, which means he is angry and is about to charge, scared the pants off me! I had read the book 'The Elephant Whisperer' and learned all kinds of things about elephants in the wild. So I was saying to Jim 'back the car up, more, more! He's mad at us!!' Jim was not impressed with my new-found knowledge.

We are enjoying how much time we are spending outdoors and in nature. How can we get more of this when we return home? It's so easy to be 'lion around' especially in the winter in Canada. One of our goals for our return will be to spend more time outdoors and in nature!
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Comments

Sue Walker on

Donna and jim,
It is hard to believe that this adventure will soon come to an end. But that only means that the next door will open and more adventures will flow in.
I am sure you are already planning lol
Thanks for sharing your AMAZING adventure with us all, stories and memories to tell for a lifetime! Sue xo

Nadine Jewer on

Hi Donna,

I have enjoyed all of your blogs to date. Your African adventures sound amazing. I can not wait to visit this amazing country where my Dad is from. I can't believe your amazing adventure is almost over. Time flies when your having fun. Safe travels back!

Peter Delefes on

Hi Donna and Jim, Just to let you know that I have been following your entries with great interest even though I haven't commented on each one. Your descriptions of places and events enable the reader to participate, vicariously, in your wonderful odyssey. The photographs are brilliant. Are you still on assignment with National Geographic? I pass by your place on Masons Point Road on my frequent peregrinations and and glad to report that all appears to be well with your house and property. Here, at the Bay ,the grass has greened, the daffodils are in full bloom, and the black flies have arrived. Enjoy the remainder of your trip. Regards, Peter

Margaret on

WOW, WOW, WOW! Inspiring.

Angie on

Thank you for sharing these experiences - I've learned so much from you. I look forward to speaking with you when you get home. What an amazing series of adventures!!!!!!!

DAVE/JUDY AVOCA SOUTH AFRICA on

Hi Donna & Jim.
Thanks for sharing your blog. We leave for Vietnam 31st Aug this year.
Thank you both for the valuable info.
Go well

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