Ellie Liota’s Week 3 post
Sunset at Wereldsend.
I realized one night, as I turned in my sleeping bag and wafted the trapped smell of myself into my nose, that I hadn’t showered in almost a week. To make matters worse, I had decided to place my nasty hiking boots next to my face, and, just as every night since I’ve been here, I had drooled all over my head. Not just my face, my entire head. I still don’t know how I do it. Needless to say, it’s awesome finding out how disgusting you can get. Just another thing Namibia has taught all of us since we’ve been in this amazing country. Anyway…
This week Dennis (the founder of Round River) and Kim (the lead scientist of Round River), came from the group in Botswana to stay with us here for a while. It was awesome being able to talk and work with them; they’re both incredible people, and very down to earth. Dennis also had some unbelievable life stories that he told us around the camp fire, one of which included him fighting a bear.
For the first time since we’ve been here, our group was split up to do our morning counts along with the game guards. On my route with Erik, Dennis and Bekah, we got to see a rhino and her baby and figured that the day had been successful as it was, until we turned a corner and came upon a pride of 10 lions crossing the road. I literally just stared with my mouth open for the good 10 seconds the group passed, and then for maybe a couple more minutes afterwards when I forgot the English language and just kind of smiled stupidly and nodded at everything said to me. All of those years of being plastered to the television watching Animal Planet, and there they were in the flesh- it was unreal. Lisa, Mike, Vehi and Constansia also got to see a honey badger on their route and on the point count Katherine, Kim and Efraim saw a rhino as well. All in all, a pretty successful day.
We later collected the camera traps we had set up in Wereldsend and Collin Spring and managed to get some awesome pictures. Going through each trap was like opening presents on Christmas morning- we never knew what was coming next. Aside from approximately 5 million pictures of zebra, we got some giraffe, oryx, kudu, the back of a porcupine, and a rhino.
Some of the millions.
A porcupine’s back. Just tryina show off dem spikes.
The rhino who later knocked the camera over. Thanks dude.
Most of this week, however, has been somewhat of a short vacation for us- the first time we’ve had off since we arrived in Namibia actually. As we drove to the Huab riverbed, which was to be only day one of a nine day long bush camping extravaganza, Pewa (our second beloved vehicle aside from Hardy-Sue) pooped out on us and pulled over to the side of the road. Unfortunately since then, Pewa has been declared out of commission, probably forever.
R.I.P Pewa. You will be missed dearly.
But check out this sky in the Huab. Heaven on the left, Mordor on the right.
After this turn of events, we camped in the Huab for a night and returned to Wereldsend in the morning. Bekah went off with Dennis and Kim to get a brand spankin’ new (secondhand) truck in Windhoek and Vehi has given us permission to name the new automobile. Right now our top choice is Uncle Funk, but we’ll have to wait and see.
While Bekah’s been gone, we’ve been lounging about Wereldsend, going on game drives and point counts in the area, listening to tunes, playing games and reading.
We’ve also started playing some soccer at the end of the day which I believe is going to become part of our daily routine. Though these past few days have been nice and relaxing, I think we’re all ready for our adventures to start up again.
To all of my friends and family, I will be returning to you as a leather jacket. The sun has made my skin look like a bog corpse’s, but I’ve gotten some pretty sweet tan lines out of it so all is well.
We love and miss everyone at home and hope things in the good ol’ US of A are going swimmingly.