Whether it is truffles or tramezzini, bully beef or Beef Wellington, we are of the belief that “there is no excuse for poorly prepared food”.Mindful of this axiom, we tried to ensure that we took the minimum necessary herbs, spices and cooking equipment to adequately prepare whatever we found in Namibia. Also, knowing we wouldn’t be in the bush all the time meant we would be able to obtain fresh supplies from shops in Namibia. As a result we didn’t deem it necessary to plan each meal.
The original plan was to traverse northern Namibia from the Caprivi to the Kaokoveld – or vice versa. I knew from past experience that the region was sparsely populated, with mainly poor, rural subsistence farmers. As novel as this trip was, the notion of (a) buying food from their meagre supplies and (b) eating goat and sadza (a type of maize meal porridge) five times a week did pall somewhat. So, for those times when dry rations were required we took a couple of packets of soups and the ubiquitous noodles. We also took emergency food in the form of freeze dried meals from a New Zealand company called Back Country Cuisine, whom we consider to make the tastiest, best quality emergency rations.
Water was our next area for attention.
Namibia, being synonymous with desert, drought, dryness and thirst made us ensure we had the water component taken care of. Of course, at the time, we hadn’t heard of all the flooding and water lying throughout the country. No, that would have saved us money.
Experience has taught yours truly that water purification tablets, while cleaning the water to an extent – often make the water decidedly unpalatable. The addition of cool drink concentrate simply adds sweetness to the questionable taste and does little if anything to quench the thirst.
We invested in two 40litre water tanks, which the alert reader will observe on top of the truck’s canopy in the photograph below (no, there won’t be any prizes). In addition, we bought two water bottles with a built in filter system from Outdoor Warehouse. The unexpectedly plenteous water supply in Namibia obviated the use of the water bottles so I cannot report on their effectiveness. Maybe next trip.