Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Bird of Passportage

Norway isn't exactly at its best right now, so I decided to head south for a while. The best option that popped up was a ticket to Johannesburg (about €650 roundtrip). While I'm not too fond of that city, it's a great base for seeking out some interesting places.

So tomorrow I fly away, ready to experience South African scares, Lesotho's mountains and the whale sharks that are cruising up and down the coast of Mozambique. I'll give the Matekane airport a miss, though...

Photo from Wikipedia.

I haven't booked anything yet, but chances are that I will join a group of travelers in order to get more done in the four weeks I have. That's partially because it's simply safer that way. African predators of all kinds prefer to single out individuals as their victims. I'll make sure I'm neither the easiest prey nor the slowest runner among those I join.

Also, while I often choose hard rather than easy when I travel, that rule doesn't apply to my journeys in Africa. Traveling there is a different game from traveling anywhere else. There's hard, and then there's African hard. Crossing a border is not necessarily just a straight-forward procedure there. Public transportation is available, but there may be no schedule for it. You may sit around and wait for it to appear for long periods of time. And then you have to wait some more for it to continue.

Finally, Africa is huge, and the highlights usually have wide stretches of emptiness between them. You can go in a vehicle that goes straight there while almost certainly not breaking down on the way, or you can get there by getting on and off a number of minibuses that may or may not go in your intended direction, while possibly carrying a selection of new and exciting strains of viruses.

This time, I will confess to probably choosing easy. Mind you, that is African easy we're talking about.

Hopefully, I'll get to elaborate on that in future blog entries.

Sala kahle!