Sunday, August 14, 2016

Halali to Onkoshi

Woke up really early i.e. 5am to go to the waterhole to hopefully see a procession like last night but there was absolutely nothing to see and we abandoned the effort at about 06:30 because we had a long drive ahead of us.  It's not so far in distance but with stopping at all the waterholes and other sightings it takes a long time to cover any distance and I don't like arriving too late.  Ideally, for me, we should arrive at places between 14:00 and 16:00 so that we can get setup and have time to relax with a sundowner, preferably alcoholic, before getting busy with the evening meal.

I had breakfast and a couple of cups of coffee before we struck camp and by just after 08:00 we were on the road after stopping at the shop to buy some more of their firewood which is really fantastic for coals and gives off a wonderful scent when it burns. The Ratels had raided the dustbin overnight so they eventually got what they wanted, just a bit later.

While driving along we crossed paths with a group of four huge male elephants, we know that they were male because one of them had his schlong hanging out as if to say, I'll show you mine, lets see yours ... pisswilly.  Caron was most impressed as it was, after all, about the size of my leg.

At Kalkheuwel which is a water hole there was a whole herd of zebras drinking and one of the youngsters slipped and fell into the waterhole taking two of his mates with him and causing quite a commotion, the herd scattered instantly before the thoroughly soaked wide eyed youngsters emerged from their unexpected bath.

We had just turned left at Namitoni towards Onkoshi at about 13:00 and I was now tired and just driving when Caron went all spastic next to me ... cheetah!  Not only was there more than one, we think it might have been a mother with two adult cubs, but they were very close to the road and very keen on hunting a wildebees or, more likely, a springbok.  Unfortunately for them the wilderbees had spotted them and were between them and the springbok who hadn't seen them.  In the end they gave up and went to while away the rest of the day in the shade of a tree which was unfortunately far from the road so we eventually gave up and left.

Today was also the day for Eagles and we saw an African Hawk Eagle, a Booted Eagle and a Tawny Eagle all in quite quick succession.  In addition we saw a African grey hornbill.

Arriving at Onkoshi it is like going from nothing to opulent luxury and we have the honeymoon suite in the resort which, while more expensive, looks exactly the same as all the others so we're not sure why there is a price difference.  All the rooms look out west over the length of the Etosha pan which is pretty awesome in the morning but not so wonderful in the afternoon because the sun streams into the rooms after about 15:00 and there is no shade on the deck facing westward.  Temperatures here are in the low 30's at about 14:00 so it was really nice having an outside shower facing onto the pan, no point in drying oneself because it only takes about 15 minutes and one is wonderfully cool and dry again.

We headed down to the restaurant for supper at about 17:30 and had some drinks on the patio as the sun dipped over the horizon before having supper which really wasn't bad at all.  By 20:30 I could barely keep my eyes open and it was lights out as my head hit the pillow.

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