Today has been a day for tying up some loose ends and one really big loose end that really needs tying up is this trip report. My apologies for taking so long….I have no excuse except that I gallivant too much.
So yes this trip report was all about why we keep going back to the KTP….why are we such slaves. The KTP has a grip on our souls and I do not think we will ever tire of visiting. Each trip is different ….and they just seem to get better. Why does each trip seem better than the previous ones. The more you visit the park the more you let the park take over…..and you soon realise that it is not all just about the lions and leopards.
We never have real high hopes or expectations that we will find something really awesome on our drives. We start each game drive with the same thought “I wonder what the Kalahari has to offer us today.” We have learnt to appreciate the tiniest of creatures…I mean where else do you find a car load of grownups fascinated by two mice having a squabble in the road. We return from every game drive having experienced something spectacular...be it a mass of yellow flowers covering the dunes, 3 cheetah v. brown hyena over a kill or an awesome thunderstorm. Sometimes the most spectacular thing of all is the seemingly “nothingness” out there…but you know that there is something out there…and sooner or later it will show itself. It is during these quite times that I think back on our previous trips to the KTP. Many a drive goes by with “ Remember the lion kill that we saw here….or remember the huge puddle that we almost got stuck in. So there is never such a thing as a quiet drive …..we have our Memories to reflect back on.
We have come a long way since first visiting the park (which was in 2000 I think)
We started off by camping at Twee Rivieren for a whole week and doing day trips to Nossob and Mata Mata. Everything went with….. our own 3 kids plus friends, exchange students, bicycles and kitchen sinks, books, games, puzzles. I spent hours before we left drawing up project sheets to keep the kids busy. Planning meals and packing took days
It probably took us a whole day to set up camp….but there we stayed for the whole week. How it has changed. I can probably now pack up for the KTP in 2 hrs flat…..
Something that has not changed though is the extreme weather……
I still tend to lose my sense of humour in these temperatures but I am now even contemplating camping at Rooiputs in Feb. How crazy is that !!!!
Can you believe that the Mata Mata gate looked like this
And the toilet stops …..
Then the children grew up and Doug and ventured off on our own in Monty. I was so skeptical…but now I love going off in Monty. That added a new dimension to our trips ..we could now do the 4 x 4 trails.
But staying up on the hill in Nossob on this last trip brought back a flood of memories and I mean a flood…
I walked onto the stoep and the first thing that jumped into my mind was an image of my mom “pole dancing” the night before the floods arrived.
I then walked into the chalet and my hair stood on end…I remembered that terrible crash banging thunderstorm that put Nossob under water….and kept us all prisoners for 3 days
I had not been up to that house on the hill since the Kalahari girls vacated it in April 2005….as I say….a flood of memories. I needed to get out of there and after much “humming and ha-ing” we went off to Marie se Gat where we had the best ever sighting of a caracal. Instant mood lifter….
We enjoyed a wonderful braai that night and now my memory of that house on the hill will be that of Doug covered in the gem squash that exploded all over him. !!!!!
Maybe now those of you that are not already “ Slaves to the Kalahari” will have a better understanding of us that are…..we have to keep going back…it is a simple as that !!!!.
Thank you all for reading my trip report……..
And thank you for the wonderful and humorous comments