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The Dubious Delights Of Driving Without Looking Where You Are Going

Sweating, swearing and swilling buckets of precious water I attempted the futile exercise of relocating around a quarter ton of soft red Kalahari sand to any other place than under my now nicely settled in bakkie, sitting there with a sort of quiet “I’m glad we are not going any further in this heat!” look of immovable resignation………

The only sound — ticking of metal cooling, softly swishing desert breeze and laboured breathing from the most recent occupant of the vehicle (now a reluctant pedestrian) uttering niceties like “ now I really am in the s…”  But, ‘n boer maak a plan, as they say.

Committing my spare wheel to a shallow grave (three times!!!!) and performing an admirably passable impersonation of  an ant bear in hot pursuit of sub-terrestrial delicacies I excavated what appeared to be World War 1 trenches in front of wheels and diffs alike and soon, well, about two hours, actually, winched my reluctant steed to firmer footing and with a quiet sense of achievement (hooting and screaming obscenities) continued on my way through this fascinating and beautifully diverse land that make Botswana

one of my favourite places on the planet.

Travelling alone is not always such a great idea in the more remote parts of our neck of the woods (or pans, more likely) but for me it is a time of exploration, getting ideas both for painting and writing, being able to be utterly independent, stopping wherever the fancy takes me, having a nap in the stillness and shade of the bush and just generally being completely selfish and not having to consider companions or fellow travellers.

The downside of course are times described above or losing your truck key during a walk in the veld…….

(repeat “now I really am in the s…”)

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