Camping – it’s not for everyone. When I told people I was going on a 19 day camping trip across Africa, from those that know me well, I got a similar response. “Camping? You? That’s not a very Daisy thing to do!”. And they are right, I wouldn’t call myself a total snob but I do seem to have some princess like tendencies, as it were. I like my creature comforts i.e a bed and sleeping far away from creepy crawlies! I’m more of a cosy hotel kind of girl. But, unfortunately, four star hotel stops just weren’t an option for my trip across the desert (shock!).
I think I prepped for my trip pretty well; got all the travel essentials, got my nails done (shellac obviously, they’ve got to be durable!) and managed to fit everything in my suitcase. Admittedly, I was the only person with a roll along suitcase, other trip members had all sensibly brought a backpack. In my defence, I have an extra 3 weeks away from home, besides, it still fits in the locker!
We are being driven across Africa in this monster truck. It’s an overland safari type vehicle – large windows but no air con, so the journeys can get a bit hot – I’m writing this on day 2 and we are heading closer to Namibia, temperate check: 10.30am – 38 degrees. I am going to roast.
Day 1 was a success! A relatively small group of 15 people plus a driver and our tour guide. I’m the only Brit, the Aussies have the majority! After exploring the Township in Cape Town we set off on our first journey – 3 hours. Totally manageable as I slept almost the entire time (very unlike me, I must have been exhausted!). Then we erected our tents and I actually did it! Easily! I was very impressed with myself:
After, we enjoyed a group wine tasting session, honestly, the best way to bond! Everyone seems really nice and I feel like we will all get along nicely! We were then made dinner (as it was our first night, the rest of the time we have a rota for cooking and cleaning!). Now, I wouldn’t say I am a vegetarian as I like meat, but it’s not really great for body so most of the time at home I enjoy a vegetarian lifestyle, but I still eat meat if I want to. However, I knew how much meat they eat in Africa and how much would be on this trip and I wanted to make sure there was an option – so I told them I was a veggie. Now I feel like I’ve been branded and I kind of have to stick to my “I’m a vegetarian’ facade so, here goes 19 days with no meat at all (you could say, I’m going cold turkey. Ha ha). I was right about the amount of meat that would be consumed though, so I probably made the right choice.
After dinner I was exhausted, despite having slept through the afternoon – I think it was the wine. There was no wifi at this camp which I do struggle with – yes I’m obsessed with my phone so sometimes we will have 3 days without wifi and I think I will find it tough. On the plus side my iPhone, which normally runs out of battery by early evening, is on 65% battery 27 hours after I took it off charge – pretty good going!
I had a shower before bed, I didn’t realise until half way through that I was sharing my shower block. With a cockroach. Yes you can imagine how that went down (there was squealing involved.) Post cockroach-sharing-shower, my tent buddy (a lovely Norwegian girl) and I sat outside and chatted for a bit watching the sky. It was beautiful. So clear! Having been in London so long I can’t remember when I last saw a sky like it! And we saw a shooting star, which I took as a good omen!
Day 2 – after breakfast we set off on a long journey. Today will be a test! An estimated 8 hour drive up to Orange River. It’s been almost 3… I’ll check in when I next get the chance! In the meantime, follow me in insta (@daisytait or @daisiesatdawnloves) to keep up with my adventures!