Showing posts from April, 2019

The Real 21 Days

I’ve been sorting through the memories of my trip…it’s unbelievable the experiences that I went through. 
I had no idea how strong I was. I slept on a thin mat on the ground in the heat while my back was in way more pain than I admitted. I am someone who thrives on sleep and needs a good night’s rest, yet somehow was able to go three weeks with horrible sleep, often waking up every hour, and yet most days able to enjoy the experience, despite my heart broken and my mind ready to go to a negative place at the drop of a hat. I helped unload and load the Lando, I carried my bags, I put up and took down my tent every day (except on those days we stayed in hostels/hotels). I did it because I had to be strong, because I came to Africa for the experience, and because I was determined to have those special moments in Africa that I longed for. It was worth every stinky pain cream that I purchased. It was worth every pain and every tear I cried. 
Yet, I almost let them slip out of my hands becaus…

Reality bites...or hurts my hip and heart

Quit Edit: I’m in Amsterdam Central. So at least I made it out.

I knew the camping trip wasn't going to be a luxury day at the spa...but I wasn't prepared for how it would effect my...well, dare I say it...old (?) body. Maybe old isn't the old...and I don't think out of shape is the word either...but I have this back/hip issue...that I don't want to get too much into, but it was around for most of 2018, despite all of the money spent at physiotherapy and acupuncture. It really restricted a lot in my life. When I found out that I was heading to Edmonton, I made a phone call to the miracle sports doc I met when I was heavy into long distance running and boot camping. He's great and he's one of those guys who actually doesn't  want to see you, he wants to fix you ASAP. Within a few weeks I was relatively pain free and we had a plan for my camping trip and I thought all was well. HA! No way. Let me start with a quick rundown of a typical day of the trip...a…

Little Lulu

On day 12 (it still feels surreal to say that…I can’t believe there is a day 12 of 21…and that day 21 is over), we visited an area called Damaraland, where the Damara people feature a living museum of how their people lived. Some of the Damaras live this way today, but it gets complicated. In many cases, the bushmen have been driven out as it is illegal to kill any of the game animals and the government wants to have any of the young children in school. More recently, there are organizations and NGOs set up to preserve their culture, but as there are several different cultures in Namibia (i believe the number was around 11 or 12) it’s difficult to preserve them all. 
The Damaras set this “Damaraland” living museum up to raise funds, raise awareness, and to show tourists how they once lived, and how they continue to live in part. 
Now - I have to be brutally honest. I was very interested in the first…two or three bushmen tribes that we visited. It was amazing to see how they lived off of…

Top Ten Themes of the Trip

Wow. Remember when I used to travel and blog daily or every second day about all my adventures? Yeah. I can’t even imagine doing every three or four or five days with this trip. This trip was insane. 
There are some themes of the trip. In no particular order they are. 
I'm a granny with a minor but extremely painful hip/back injury, but I think that I can do anything and the pain will go away when I want it to. Heartbreak hotel....campground.  R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Learn to spell it in all languages please. I'm independent, but pleassseeee like me. Please. Who won World War II? I forgot, can you remind me again? Africa Magic & Africa SurprisesThe kindness of othersWhen it comes to age, in many instances: 39 - 25 = 20Fat CampThe wheels on the bus on round and round - so don't f*ck with my seat.It will take me some time to write about each theme...and each theme doesn't need to be written about. Like #1. 

For those of you that follow me on Facebook, some of the stories will be…

21 people for 21 days

The last two days of my camping trip I completely shut down. I got caught up in trying to fit in, getting frustrated that I didn’t feel like drinking, socializing, or partying...& I was taking so much personally. 
Throughout the trip I ignored my self care (physio, quick meditations, etc) and had poor sleep (ummm sleeping in a tent!!!) & that built up to the point that some days, I was 100% introverted & I’m sure sent out a « Leave me alone » vibe.
By the last day, I couldn’t even eat supper with the group because all I could handle was quiet and me alone. While I would gladly do this trip over again...and I can’t change the past, it surprised me how quickly I gave up my important healthy habits. 
As a result, I didn’t get to say goodbye to any of the people that I wanted to in person...and sort of alienated myself from the group. While I’m sure no one cried themselves to doesn’t leave me with a balanced feeling. 
Three days later, rested, recuperated, drinking an I…
I had planned on keeping my blog updated as we go, catching up on the days where we had long travel days...but everything has been too real & crazy & emotional & intense. 
The last time I went on any kind of Africa travel, I went first class (except perhaps for my mount Kenya climb) and while that was mind blowing and breathtaking and amazing, this is (almost) inexplicable. 
Apart from setting up the heavy canvas tent and taking it down (by myself since we have an odd number of women in the group) and praying that it fits in the tent sack and then getting my luggage, eat breakfast, & shower & change clothes all by 04h30 or 05h30 or 08h30 when we are really, really lucky....we have our rotating chores, we have to spend 24/7 with 22 other people (including the guides), we have to eat what we are served (or go hungry), we have to live with the differences of the other cultures (like sorry guys, it’s in my heritage, but the Germans on our trip are downright rude & ig…