You see, I can’t be away for five minutes and I have to come back and sort you lot out. I’m just kidding, you were all probably impeccably behaved. However, in truth I was away just longer than five minutes.
In the best traditions of humanity’s shame, to wit, reality shows, I felt I needed to explain my severely curtailed absence.
For some months, we’d been planning (and saving) for another trip north of our South African borders. Our route was to take us north into Botswana, then east to the Victoria Falls (the largest waterfall in the world). At this point we planned to then traverse west into Namibia to visit the Caprivi Strip before retracing our steps southwards and homewards.
Meals were planned, lenses were hired (I can’t afford to actually buy a 600mm F/4 lens) and the trusty Toyota Hilux was packed for the trip. However, as Murphy (who is this swine anyway?) would have it, a few health problems cropped up a few days prior to departure, requiring a visit to the medical bods.
While at the medical facility, surrounded by a nurse or two, a doctor and, I suspect, several trillion germs, I managed – with staggering alacrity – to contract a cold. BUT, I thought to myself, what’s a mere snotty nose when one is photographing nature in all its Botswanan, Namibian and Zimbabwwean spleandour? Undaunted, we left this morning for the Bot border only to turn back before even reaching Cradock – which, to my foreign reader, was about 200km from Port Elizabeth.
Turns out it wasn’t simply a cold; and after the fever, aches and pains normally associated with the common cold, the chest and face (sinus passages) are now hurting like hell and bouts of coughing are producing great lumps of…. another biscuit anyone? To summarise, I was feeling pretty grim and reminding myself of dogs I have known who have undoubtedly not felt as sick as I.
So, here we are back in PE having waved goodbye to our friends in the convoy and money we won’t be able to recoup. There are no words (well, clean ones anyway) that adequately convey the disappointment at not completing this trip. It seems there is never a dull moment in the life of this wretched blogger. Disappointing without a doubt, but not dull.