[Life Update 2018] Africa & The First Months of Travel
Time for a Life Update!
I thought an update was long overdue since Africa so here’s your fill!
I’ve just finished our 42-day tour in Southern Africa and it was amazing! We saw all of the Big Five animals (Lion, Elephant, Rhino, Leopard, Buffalo) and the landscapes were b-e-a-utiful.
So the tour took us around 7 countries in 42 days. As you can imagine, it was quite fast-paced! When the tour started in Cape Town, there were only 4 of us on the truck. Scott, Me and two German girls. I was a bit underwhelmed to be honest but that’s probably because I’d had an image in my head of a huge group of people at our pre-departures meeting!
The girls were really nice though and we enjoyed the first few places we went to. When we hit Pretoria, 3 guys joined us and one of the girls left. It was cool to have a bit of a mix up but it was our first goodbye so that was tough! The guys turned out to be cool though and one of them (Ryan) fell into the role of my travel bestie (our relationship was built on meme and vine references lol).
Livingstone is where it all changed! About 13 people joined our tour and it started to turn into the tour I’d imagined. Everyone was cool and I loved getting to know them all. One of my favourite parts of travelling is hearing everyone’s story about where they come from, why they’re travelling etc.
We went to see a school where Ryan had volunteered at previously and it was definitely a highlight. The kids were so excited to see us and they loved all the gifts we brought them! After that, the trip picked up and the next few stops were so good!! Having a good group changes the dynamic so much - the banter was plentiful.
I managed to tick a few things off my bucket list on our African Tour:
Shark Cage Diving (in Cape Town)
Ziplining over a gorge (in Tsitsikamma)
Swimming in Devils Pool (Vic Falls)
Seeing Victoria Falls (Zambia/Zimbabwe)
See the Big Five on an African Safari
Skydiving (in Namibia)
On top of that, we walked with Rhinos, Camped in the bush, Swam in the Okavango Delta and got drunk on a cheetah farm.
When we decided to come away for our “gap year/two year break/whatever it is”, we knew we’d have experiences like that but I didn’t realise how many we’d get through in the first two months!
I’m clumsy. Scott is always taking the mickey out of me because I’d make a mess or accidentally rip, scratch, drop things etc.
On the tour, I managed to get away without being too sick! My stomach was fine and I only felt sick after a heavy night on the beers one time towards the end of the tour (I had cramps, sickness etc).
On the tour, I got a few bumps an scrapes, as you’d imagine when you’re camping your way through Africa! First off, my Wisdom Teeth started to make an appearance. Perfect timing, thanks wisdom! This ended up with me taking Paracetamol and Ibuprofen for a week or two until they settled down again.
When we were in Livingstone, I kicked a branch while I was wearing my sliders and gave myself a lovely cut down my big toe. It wasn’t bad because I’m big and brave so just brushed it off… Flash-forward to our trip to the Cheetah farm and we stopped for a toilet break at the side of the road. The door to the truck had been acting up so you had to force it open sometimes. I decided to do the honours and the door swung open and took me with it. I ended up scraping my toe along the stones and taking off a big chunk of skin. Scott tried to clean it with dettol but I was having none of it because it stung. Eventually, I dunked my toe in and cleaned it up (big and brave, remember?).
Once the tour finished, my body decided to give up on me a day before coming to India. I got CRAZY traveller’s diarrhea and started throwing up, hallucinating and had a fever. It was not fun at all. I spent the two days in the hostel on the floor of a cold shower and couldn’t eat for about a week. I just started eating proper food again and feel more like a human being!
I’ve had a few Anxiety attacks since I’ve been in Africa. Maybe it’s the lack of sleep, the massive bout of sickness I have right now, the bad diet or just my disorder being a shit but it’s tough! Travel in general is tough for anyone with Anxiety but at the fast pace we’re going, it’s especially hard. Truthfully, I’ve been struggling with India. The culture shock has got me good! I’ve been focusing on mindfulness a lot more to try to combat any bad moods I get myself into. I’ll expand on my India experience in another post because it’ll run on forever! In short - my Anxiety has been testing me but I’m still coming out on top :)
I’m off to have some spoonfuls of lovely Indian food (or a Dominos if we can’t decide where to go). Have a good day!