Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

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Cape of Storms
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Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Cape of Storms »

It’s been a long time coming. Five years between trip reports is just too long. But as with everything in life, it is true that pretty soon seconds become minutes, become
Hours, becomes days which leads into weeks, months, and eventually years. We immigrated to Seattle about 8 years ago. We love living here but of course the heart will always remain in the Sun of Africa.

We have tried to return as often as we can but the past year has been a roller coaster and a nightmare. My mom got sick unexpectedly with cancer. A glioblastoma. December 2022 she is dancing in my living room in Seattle, and by April, sadly she passed away in my arms at home in her bed in Cape Town. Life teaches you these lessons : never take anything for granted. and that is going to be my goal with this trip. Not taking anything for granted and enjoying every moment. As the expression goes, sucking the marrow out life.

For me, this trip is to heal, regain some joy and spend quality time with my darling family. I am not going to focus on seeing the big five, or something exciting happening in the bush. Life has blessed me with many incredible sightings over the years, and all that I can hope for is to soak up some of that incredible African Lifeforce. If all I walk away with is the smell of the bush, a crackling fire, and the sounds of nature at night I will be happy camper. With all that said, let’s get into this journey.

Embarking on an Epic Journey: From Seattle to South Africa

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Our adventure commenced with a crazy flight itinerary, starting in Seattle and zipping over to Vancouver via car, before jetting off to the magical city of Paris. Amidst a brief layover, we managed a lightning-fast visit to the iconic Eiffel Tower and the bustling Champs-Élysées . Back to the airport before flying to Oliver Tambo. Africa was calling and we were ready to experience all she had to offer.
Trip Report Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

2023 Kruger Trip :dance: :dance:
8 - 11 December LS
11 - 13 December Olifants
13 -15 December Satara
15-17 December Orpen
:dance: :dance:
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umtali1
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by umtali1 »

CoS, I’m definitely on board :popcorn:
Life is hard when it takes our loved ones away from us. A place for healing is often required and the Kruger is top of the list :gflower: :k
There is something totally captivating about the smell and sounds of Africa - something only really appreciated when you’ve been away from the place.

Is it 8 years since you emigrated :big_eyes:
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https://www.sanparks.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=101340

2016 Reis Verhaal from Kruger 'Bush' Camps
2013 Mokala and KNP,
2015 "Cape Town to Namibia border"
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FinMari
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

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CoS belated condolences :k

You managed to see Eiffel tower and Champs Elysee :clap: :clap: :clap:

I'm definetly onboard this bus :popcorn: :popcorn:
5.-9.4.2024 Mapungubwe NP
9.-21.4.2024 Kruger NP
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Hugh »

I am so looking forward to this TR
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by colbol »

:D
I am definitely on board with you for this journey :gflower:
:D
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Meandering Mouse »

My heart goes out to you. Cancer is horrible. :cry: I am pleased that you could spend the last moments with your mother. :gflower: :k

The bush is healing. I also spent time in Kruger after my mother passed from cancer........ but this is your story.

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Karin Mitton »

I am so sorry to hear about your mom. :gflower: :k
Cape of Storms wrote: Sun Jan 07, 2024 8:45 pm For me, this trip is to heal, regain some joy and spend quality time with my darling family. I am not going to focus on seeing the big five, or something exciting happening in the bush. Life has blessed me with many incredible sightings over the years, and all that I can hope for is to soak up some of that incredible African Lifeforce. If all I walk away with is the smell of the bush, a crackling fire, and the sounds of nature at night I will be happy camper. With all that said, let’s get into this journey.
I so agree with this. And I know from personal experience that the Park knows when you need a hug, and then deliveres. So I am sure your trip would be incredible.
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Elsa »

My condolences to you and your lovely family. :gflower:

After such a horrible time a trip like this one is perfect and Kruger the place to be for its healing properties for soul and body.

I look forward to reading all about it. :thumbs_up:
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by RichardJ »

Onboard :popcorn:

Our sincere condolences.
Starlings, Shrikes and Rollers. KNP Jan to March 21

Faces of the Kgalagadi - December 2020

The Circle of Life - retirement tour 2019
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Cape of Storms »

umtali1 wrote: Sun Jan 07, 2024 8:59 pm CoS, I’m definitely on board :popcorn:
Life is hard when it takes our loved ones away from us. A place for healing is often required and the Kruger is top of the list :gflower: :k
There is something totally captivating about the smell and sounds of Africa - something only really appreciated when you’ve been away from the place.

Is it 8 years since you emigrated :big_eyes:
I couldn’t agree more! And yes unbelievably it has been that long!
FinMari wrote: Sun Jan 07, 2024 9:36 pm CoS belated condolences :k

You managed to see Eiffel tower and Champos Elysee :clap: :clap: :clap:

I'm definetly onboard this bus :popcorn: :popcorn:
Thank you FinMari. Wish we had more time to explore but we will return when we can. The city was looking clean for the Olympics! So now is probably a good time to have been
Hugh wrote: Sun Jan 07, 2024 9:38 pm I am so looking forward to this TR
I hope it meets expectation. My camera skills need some tuning in and I was also trying to help the girls with theirs. While still enjoying what we were seeing!

Colbol I am glad you can join us. Plenty of space on the bus
Meandering Mouse wrote: Mon Jan 08, 2024 8:29 am My heart goes out to you. Cancer is horrible. :cry: I am pleased that you could spend the last moments with your mother. :gflower: :k
The bush is healing. I also spent time in Kruger after my mother passed from cancer........ but this is your story.
:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:
It is allot to process and will take time but this trip was a good start. I am so sorry that you went through it too.
Karin Mitton wrote: Mon Jan 08, 2024 8:58 am And I know from personal experience that the Park knows when you need a hug, and then deliveres. So I am sure your trip would be incredible.
Thank you Karin. It sure does! It is like an old friend that know exactly what to do
Elsa wrote: Mon Jan 08, 2024 9:20 am My condolences to you and your lovely family. :gflower:
After such a horrible time a trip like this one is perfect and Kruger the place to be for its healing properties for soul and body.
I look forward to reading all about it. :thumbs_up:
Thank you Elsa, Kruger is so magical. It was for all of us
RichardJ wrote: Mon Jan 08, 2024 9:21 am Onboard :popcorn:

Our sincere condolences.
Thank you. I hope you enjoy the trip
Trip Report Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

2023 Kruger Trip :dance: :dance:
8 - 11 December LS
11 - 13 December Olifants
13 -15 December Satara
15-17 December Orpen
:dance: :dance:
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

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Touching down in Johannesburg, our excitement soared, though a hiccup with our luggage momentarily delayed the start of our escapade. With wheels on the tarmac around 11:30, we aimed to shop swiftly in Nelspuit and then venture towards Crocodile Bridge, destined for Lower Sabie and our first night in paradise. But, life's unpredictability, combined with traffic and roadworks, messed with our plans. Despite managing our shopping in record time, by 5:15, reaching the rest camp seemed like a distant dream. We had less than 1 hour and 15 minutes to get to Lower Sabie and we had just made it to Malelane!

Our family crunched numbers on the gps, prompting a swift decision to try change our first night's stay to Bergendal. With nerves racing we sought entry into the park, hoping for the assistance of the incredible Sanparks staff. Of course their smiling faces at the gate reassured me they would help us still get our first night in Kruger!

Begining Tuesday in Seattle at lunchtime finally ending at 17.40 on Friday evening at the gates of Kruger Park.

We head up the main drag directly to Berg-en-dal.
Despite the tight schedule, our eyes feasted on a few customary sights. Among the first was an Impala accompanied by babies!

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The light and my very unpracticed camera abilities, resulted in very poor photographs, so this is the best I had.

This was emblematic of the thriving wildlife awaiting us for the rest of the trip. Vibrant life amidst the lush, green grasslands.

Transitioning from Seattle's icy, wet, cold to Berg-en-dal’s scorching 40°C heat was a stark yet welcomed change. The shock of temperature aside, the warmth of the wilderness was fantastic.

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At reception a slight delay, organizing of our wildcards and conservation fees. However, every moment of preparation only heightened the anticipation for the adventures awaiting us in Kruger.

Berg-en-dal unit 62 : December 8

A little friend to welcome us!

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It was as if she was saying welcome home. The table is ready for you.

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Unit number 62 at Bergendal Camp. Yep, jetlag was hitting us hard, especially the girls, who conked out after a shower and a quick snack. But hey, hubby and I were buzzing with excitement!

So, what's the best way to beat that jetlag buzz? A fire and a braai, obviously! Lamb chops, chicken kebabs, and a side of boerwors – that hit the spot big time.

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While the girls snoozed, we cozied up by the fire, embracing the evening's tranquility.

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The healing had began.
Trip Report Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

2023 Kruger Trip :dance: :dance:
8 - 11 December LS
11 - 13 December Olifants
13 -15 December Satara
15-17 December Orpen
:dance: :dance:
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by umtali1 »

The excitement is palpable :dance: :dance: :dance:

Berg-en-dal ain’t a bad place to start your trip :thumbs_up: :clap: :dance:
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https://www.sanparks.org/forums/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=101340

2016 Reis Verhaal from Kruger 'Bush' Camps
2013 Mokala and KNP,
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by colbol »

:D
Oops - the time flying by adding pressure to a jet lagged system.

Change of camp plans worked out ok , look at that welcome from lady buck .

Sitting by the fire in Kruger - so gooood :D

Cheers CoS
:D
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

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With all hiccups on the way to get superb SANParks staff at BnD :D

Welcoming super lovely Bush Buck :heart: :heart:

Excellent braai :dance: :dance: :dance:

As you said - healing has began :heart:

:popcorn: :popcorn:
5.-9.4.2024 Mapungubwe NP
9.-21.4.2024 Kruger NP
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Re: Journey of Healing: Embracing the African Lifeforce December 2023

Unread post by Meandering Mouse »

That is certainly a special greeting from a local resident.

A sizzling braai and the sounds of the night. Nothing could be more special.

:popcorn:
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