Misfits Mid Life Crisis Adventures in ………….. Mozambique and South Africa.
This week I have mainly been listening to….. Blur, The Chemical Brothers, Basement Jaxx, Morrissey, Lana Del Ray, Nirvana, Bob Marley, Moby, Elbow, Coldplay, P.J Harvey.
And have been watching…. Breaking Bad (season 5), Doctor Who “Robot of Sherwood” (episode 3, season 8/34), The Great British Bake off (season 4, eps 6, 2013), Doctor Who “Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS” (season 7/33).
Saturday, was a busy day starting with an Ocean Safari. During the trip we had some humpback action from a far and saw a devil ray and yellow fin tuna jumping (not together). It was at the end of the safari that things hotted up, a Mother and baby humpback doing what humpbacks do best. As always I couldn’t take my eyes off these beautiful creatures. Later I went for a run, there is no PIGWATCH as the pig was not spotted I suspect she was with her piglets preparing for new Doctor Who. Once home jumped in the shower and quickly changed as I had been invited to a beach front braai (a BBQ) a couple of guest that had dived and been on safari were having a meal. Sitting helping make salad almost on the beach front with people from Germany, Italy and other nationalities made me feel very cosmopolitan and European I liked that. I had to leave just after 8 to get home for 8.30 (7.30 UK time), its Saturday, its new Doctor Who. I watched the episode on Skype, really enjoyed it even when the screen looked like a pizza had been smeared over it…lol.
Sunday started with a double tank, first Manta reef, unfortunately no Mantas were seen in fact the viz was so bad it was almost impossible to see your hand in front of your face. Saw a couple of turtles chasing each other though. During the surface interval we had a whale shark, she wasn’t huge but what a stunner, at one point she swam right under me her back fin going straight between my legs. I just stayed still in the water I didn’t want to move as I didn’t want to touch or upset her. The second dive was at Mikes Cupboard, the viz was no better but we did have another turtle that’s about all I can report. Going home we had a few dolphins but as ever there so quick we didn’t get in with them. Then the best moment we got buzzed by three humpbacks a mother and baby plus male escort who came so close to us, we could see there shadows almost under the boat and a close look at their fins just under the surface. This trio were very chilled it was them who came over to see us, that’s how it felt anyway. It’s been a bank holiday weekend in Mozambique, Tofo today was really busy, lots of cars, lots of people. Music coming from sound systems on the back of trucks packed with people, the general atmosphere was like a party. I have heard that I am leaving for South Africa now on Tuesday morning at 3.30am I have a lift there, not sure how I’m getting back. I did a little packing this evening.
Monday 8th September 2014, the breaking news is that there is a baby on the way. My brother Paul and his lovely wife Sigrida are having a baby, congratulations to them both the news is wonderful. Other than that there is no other world news today. Tofo is quieter today after the bank holiday weekend. I went on 2 really nice dives which were better than yesterday, you could actually see in front of you. We had viz of maybe 10 metres; I was sweeping at the back a lovely easy group of divers. I’ve been preparing the stuff I’m taking to SA, just in case I’m there a couple of days I have a change of clothes, toothbrush, camera and computer. I am also making sure that everything is charged as I don’t really know what to expect to be honest. I Skyped with SAZ and her lovely family on holiday in Cornwall and Mum and Hel in Northamptonshire. Showed Bigit around her new home for a few days she met her housemates Tiger and Tank, I will really miss then while I’m away.
About an hour before I left, I discovered 2 things, one Doctor Who was on (season 7/33”Journey to the centre of the TARDIS”) I couldn’t watch it all as I had to leave but saw most of it. The other thing I discovered was that my dongle is not working has it broken or just run out that’s what I need to find out. The moon was beautiful I didn’t really need a torch walked to Mozambeats, coz it was 3am I wore jeans and a jacket, I didn’t need them once at Mozambeats I changed in the middle of the dirt road in the dark. Met Ray and the other 2 travelling with us, just after 3.30 we were on our way. There was quite a lot of fog/mist patches as we left the local area. We stopped at 7.30am about half way in to our trip. We arrived at the Mozambique/South African border about 10.50 am; we had to go through two different sections showing passports and being stamped along the way. Once finished at the boarder we made our way to Nelspruit about 150km away, we made good time arriving at Funky Monkeys at 12.30pm. I have a room to myself as I didn’t fancy a dorm. I then got a cab and went in to town, found the post office (we don’t have a postal service in Tofo) so sent a couple of things to people I care about. Bought some toiletries I’m running low on a few things. I had a few problems finding the dive shop; once I did I bought some new gloves, booties and a mask and snorkel, quite cheap really. Had fish and chips at “Fishaways”, I see their ads on SA TV all the time, very disappointing really was, almost cold chips and the fish was tiny. Spent the evening at Funky Monkey fighting with the wifi, which was not great. I’m looking at leaving Nelspruit tomorrow about noon to Maputo, the adventure continues…..
Wednesday, and I’m a woman with a plan. Didn’t sleep well at Funky Monkeys this might be because I had the return journey on my mind. I was up early watched a couple of Breaking Bad season 5 at 9am my cab arrived. I found Greyhound buses first so went with them and booked a ticket for the 13.30 to Maputo. I had hours to kills, I walked about, I spent time in the Greyhound office reading and then I got hungry. I ended up in KFC as it was just over the road, it really wasn’t very nice, I know people that class this as food, I don’t. The bus came and I left Nelspruit, my time in SA had ended really quickly. I arrived at the boarder at 16.45(ish) got my stamp I was back in Mozambique finishing up in Maputo at 18.45. After a short cab ride I made it to Fatima’s backpackers, where I booked a ticket for 5am shuttle bus to Tofo. I also had to book a dorm room as I couldn’t just sit there and wait for 5am, I didn’t want to sleep in a dorm I’m old for that so I decided to just stay in the bar. I made friends with a cute black puppy a Labrador that lives there.
I sat there in the bar all alone and used up the juice in the laptop and the Kindle, made them last all night not getting any sleep. At 5am I was outside and got taken with someone else to the bus station and shown our ride. The bus was not big it had an open trailer behind for belonging. I got on sitting at the back, I didn’t use the trailer I stuffed my gear under my legs and on top of them. We sat there until 6.40am people continually came up to the windows trying to sell bread, apples, razor blades, socks all kinds of strange products. When the bus finally left at 20 to seven the bus was full, we made 3 pit stops each time everyone was glad to be on their feet and out of the bus. The last stop I had to pay 10mts to use the loo, these were the cleanest and most well maintained bogs I have visited in Mozambique so 10mts was well worth it. During the trip I was able to nod off now and then, remember I haven’t had any sleep in over 24 hours. Even with the windows open it was very hot, summer is round the corner here and it is getting hotter every day. Once I saw Inhambane I knew where I was and felt that home was not far. However we ended up sitting in the bus station for what felt like ages, the bus station is such a busy place full of people and small buses. Finally we carried on our journey we made regular stops to drop off people and belongings, in the end there were just 4 of us left going to Tofo. When we stopped at the petrol station (the one I run too) we all took the opportunity to buy supplies. I got off to Tofo and off the bus at 4pm, I felt tired and dirty but so happy to be back in the little town by the sea that I have really come to love. The last few days I have travelled many miles, crossed the border and visited a little part of South Africa. SA is a huge country and is somewhere that I would like to explore more, but it’s good to be home….
Friday, was shop day it was good to be back at Liquid. I had been told about a new member of the Liquid team, Alice the cat. Alice is a tom cat and called Alice after Alice Cooper (who I met a long time ago) this is due to a little black patch on his face and he has a long tongue. When I opened the door there was Alice slumped on the cushions relaxed, he totally owed the place. He was not locked in all night he has found a way to get in; it appears that he has been hanging about since Tuesday. Alice kept me company all day, laying on me or sleeping next to me. I made sure that he had fresh water; I had chicken and rice for lunch so I shared the chicken with him. This evening I bought some Whiskers which I will take in tomorrow, I am determined not to get too hung up on this fellow. The birds that hang about in the trees and branches are not as pleased about the new neighbour; they were making a huge racket when Alice was sitting below their branches looking up. Let’s hope that Alice doesn’t bring us a present in the morning. Thomas took my computer to a friend who has managed to sort out the problem that wouldn’t allow me to use my dongle. It’s all working at the moment.
Been a busy week, spent time in Mozambique and South Africa, not sure how many miles I travelled in 3 days but I did enjoy it. I will have to do the visa run again in early December if I decide to stay after 1 November which is when I’m due to return at the moment. If I do have to do the visa run again, I might pay the little extra and fly I don’t know if I can really do that bus trip again.