We head home
We watched our final African sunrise from the camp,
loaded up the Corolla,
said goodbye to Betty the bushbuck, and headed out the camp gate, hoping that this would be the day of the cat.
It wasn’t, but we had our fair share of elephants, so I was a happy camper.
We gave ourselves 6 hours to get from Crocodile Bridge camp to the Malelane gate, and we savored every minute of it, taking photos of every bird, stopping to look at rock formations, finally seeing klipspringers
and a jackal.
We stopped to watch baboons playing in the road. The babies were running back and forth, and there was no way of moving on without risking running one over, so we, and several other cars just sat and watched them at play (and we were munching biltong again).
We waited behind a van while a rhino crossed the road. It was the rather unusual. The writing on it said “Heeltyd Speeltyd” which Brian translated as “always playtime”, but it had a picture of a lion about to either molest or devour a zebra. Very strange.
We had had a wonderful 6 nights in Kruger. The holiday ended way too soon. Yes, we were disappointed about not having a good lion encounter, but seeing and experiencing all the other delights that the park had to offer more than made up for that. You can get too focused on ticking off sightings on your animal checklist, and miss out on the thrill of just being in such a magical place. Every impala is a wonder of nature, every elephant a sight to be seen. It all adds up to making this place so marvelous.
Self drive and self-catering may not be for everyone, but it does give you the ability to explore the park on your own schedule, and learn to cook on a skottle! I would certainly do it again.
We managed to get to the Malelane gate on time, and drove carefully to the airport. We had had no problems driving on the wrong side of the road in the park, but were concerned about how we would manage again on the open road. Brian is a star and he drove us safely to the airport, where we bade farewell to the now excessively dusty little Corolla. It may not have been the best car for game viewing, but it served us well. I really appreciated the fact that it was blue. 99.97% of the other cars on the road were white; it’s good to be different!
We flew to Johannesburg, but we were too early to check in for our flight to Dubai. While waiting near the check in area we watched the sunset. It was quite a contrast from the sunsets in the park, but never the less absolutely beautiful. We are so sad to be leaving South Africa, but we are already making plans for our next adventure! We also can’t wait to try out the biltong maker at home J