Livingstone Sunset Cruise
Hello. My pick up for the cruise was 45 minutes late- and then couldn’t open the side door to the mini van (despite the fact that there were already people in there!) The driver struggled for 8 minutes, finally having me sit next to him in the front. Smart move on his part, because I was definitely not going to get into the van if the door was going to stick!!
This turned out to really be a booze cruise. Since I don’t drink, well, there you are. However, I did meet some wonderful people. A couple from Zimbabwe who farm tobacco pointed out a lot of animals on the shore that I wouldn’t have seen: baboons, impala, a baby elephant, certain birds who next inside deep holes they poke into the river side, and of course, lots and lots of hippos. The husband told me that they call the hippos the policemen of the river. When I asked him why, he said because no one wants to upset them!
There was a small boat moving along the shore, but it gave very wide berth to the hippos. My friend explained that one hippo, coming up under the boat, would easily tip it over.
We noticed that the hippos would open their mouths very wide. My Zimbabwe friends explained that was because our boat was boxing the hippos in next to the shore, so they were baring their teeth to scare us away. I had thought they might be yawning or drinking. Every time I tried to get a photo, by the time my camera flashed, the hippos had submerged. I think I have a lot of empty water shots!
The food was very basic: appetizers with small sausages, tiny chick legs, cheese straws and tiny pizzas. We were also given roasted peanuts (very tiny and very salty). Since I hadn’t eaten since 10 that morning, I was pretty hungry.
The “barbeque” dinner was coleslaw and salad, chicken legs and sausage. By that time, most of the people on board were feeling no pain, so they didn’t care.
It was the company that I enjoyed. I met a woman from Australia on a month-long tour that started in Cape Town, South Africa and went to Botswana, Namibia and other places. One place she stayed had elephants roaming the place. Usually they put out water for the elephants, but there was some problem. So the elephants smelled this woman’s bottle of water and banged against her tent-like structure. Pretty scary.
I met a couple from Yorkshire, England who had gone white water rafting, riding elephants, walking with lions, two river cruises- and were thinking about volunteering at the native village (apparently, that was an activity option).
On the shuttle back to the lodge, I met two young folks from Boston who had been in Lusaka for three months working on some water=related project. The woman had lived in Kabul, Afghanistan for three years prior. She said that after a while, you don’t notice the gunmen on the walls!
I even ran into the same older man from California I had met while waiting in line for Customs at Lusaka Airport. Small world.
Goodness! It is only 8 p.m. and I’m tuckered out. I’ve asked them to wake me at 8 tomorrow. I’m just going to relax before I head back to Lusaka at 1 to set up and get ready for Monday’s session.