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Clare’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 29 Nov 2007

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

MapAfter the excitement of the Bungee, Maria, Joenie & I all headed back to Tokkie lodge to pack up and cross the border to Zambia where we would be staying for a couple days before our flights in various directions.

Our border crossing was made slightly ridiculous by the presence of Maria's 5ft 6' wooden giraffe which she had bought and had to stick out of a back window as we drove around! needless to say we managed and were soon settled in our lodge in Livingstone. We did a sunset cruise that night but our hearts weren't really in it without the others and it was quite a low key affair without much boozing, but good views of Hippos!

Next day we was much better, we did the walking safari to Livingstone Island, the island at the top of the falls where Livingstone first viewed them in the 1860s. You can only do the walk in the dry season as you walk across the top of the falls and its obviously 6ft deep with water cascading over the gorge edge in the wet season. The highlight however of the trip is the fact that you can swim in the pools on the very edge of the top of the falls - something that really freaks out the tourists watching on the Zim side! Only in Africa would this be possible!

The walk there is really great, you have some brilliant viewpoints of the falls and its crazy to think the water fills the whole area in the wet season, but the swim in the pools was one of the highlights of my life... you jump into the 3m deep pool, swim to the edge, from where you can look down the falls themselves and have photos etc taken - make sure you look at mine when I upload them. The water flow in the pool is still strong, but there is a 60cm wide shelf of rock which stops you going over and the water is only about 5cm deep going over the shelf so its really safe, but it looks crazy dangerous and waving to the tourists on the Zim side who are watching agog with fear is brilliant!

That turned out to be our last big adventure in Africa, we said goodbye to Joenie at her backpackers and just as we were leaving for the airport had a brilliant last chance encounter with the truck which had done the border crossing the day after us and sadly had been burgled at the campsite they had stayed at the night before. It meant we got to do goodbyes properly and as Maria and I went to catch our flight another massive thunderstorm started...we like to think it was Nyami-Nyami (the river god of the Zambezi) sending us on our way. After that we were back in South Africa getting our fast-food fix, before Maria flew down to Port Elizabeth for a few more weeks on the Coast and I headed off to India.

Thus endeth chapter one of the Odyssey.