16 September day 9
I think that everybody at some point in their life encountered that feeling of “I wish that I stayed in bed” type of days
This was one of those (I wish that I stayed in bed) days for us and it will become quite clear why, if you stay with us for today’s trip, however the opposite of getting up and going whatever happens when in Kruger, might just also be true
We were up and busy as per normal by 04:00, when I remembered that I should have a look at the bakkie’s left rear tyre. It was still raining and wet outside when I went to investigate and found the tyre totally deflated
Although already dressed, I had to change clothes to be able to lie in the mud to get the spare, situated underneath the bakkie and change the flat. For safety purposes I had a special lock installed that you have to remove to get to the spare wheel. I kept the key separately in the glove box.
The nuts of the wheels also have a special spanner to remove them, because I had maggs fitted and then I also have another set of nuts to fasten the spare wheel (no magg) with.
This was a lot to think of that early in the morning and that only to change a tyre.
Tyre changed and put in the back of the bakkie till repaired.
Everything worked out fine and we were on our way by 06:10. This changed our whole plan for the day, because we had to drive to Skukuza to repair the flat
It is funny how one retraces one’s steps, when you did not follow the exact opposite, at finishing a job.
We were already gone out the gate along the ups and downs of the S139 when I remember that I left the lock key on the back bumper in all the haste to leave and the lock was back in place. The spare key was in the safe at home. I had to overcome this obstacle by reshuffling the packing space
Lucky for us, Hilda did not forget to take a lucky packet with.
First out this morning was this shy Saddle-billed Stork.
Then the first birdie charm, which was this Tawny Eagle that was not happy at all.
The next item was another birdie charm. I think it is an African Hawk-Eagle which is another first for us.
Next is a photo of the Croc River just to show how beautiful it is along the S25.Then she pulled out the first Forumite charm for the day. It was stu and family from the UK in a combi. We had a nice chat and he told us that we just missed a leopard that was sitting next to the road.
This was mite number 10 for the trip thus far.
We came across this little birdie charm just before we crossed the Mlambane River.
It was a really wet Spotted Thick-knee. (quite a funny looking bird).
The Mlambane River’s bank resulted in a steep incline in the road to overcome if we want to go any further. It rained for 3 days non-stop and this incline was really wet and slippery due to the type of surface material used during road building.
I was chuffed that I could use the 4x4 and went for it. Half way up the hill I felt the bakkie slide off to the left side of the road and going nowhere. (I forgot to activate the diff-lock)
Hilda gave me the look and said to me that this is not the time to make way for other people to pass, because it feels as if the bakkie is falling over. I dare any man in my position to differ with any women at that point in time
We did make it to the top in crab like style and I turned around to see if Stu will also tackle the hill, but with no surprise he only made it 5 meters up the hill and had to turn back to the Biyamiti road.
This is how the bakkie looked after the muddy patch.
We were on course again and another birdie charm was on offering. This time a Bateleur
And some ground Hornbills
We visited the Gardenia Hide that only consist of a mud pool and no birds at all
Renosterpan was also quiet with only a drenched raptor in a tree.
We had a quick body break at Afsaal and was on our way again, when Hilda pulled another charm from the packet. This was two buffs testing their strength against each other.
Another charm from the packet revealed mom and youngster, grazing in the veldt, wet or not.
The next item from the packet was this real sweetie of a zebbie. You could see that he did not enjoy the rain at all.
When we arrived at Skukuza we decided to draw some money at the ATM before fixing the tyre. I put my card into the machine and activate the transaction to be done. I heard the machine counting the notes but nothing else happened. The machine went silent and then started counting again. I started thinking about the (I wish that I stayed in bed) day when the ATM did the counting process six times and nothing happened
After a seventh time of counting by the ATM, it pushed out a stack of notes that was all crumpled and lying in all wind directions. With a sigh of relief I quickly removed the cash that was correctly counted and wondering what will be next on this scary day
We went to the garage and the tyre was quickly fixed and after visiting the shop we were ready to take on the rest of the day. What will the rest of the day deliver after such a morning.........................