It happens. There is a chance that your overland truck will break down. The roads in Africa aren’t in perfect condition. The constant wear and tear can take its toll. And, from the beginning, we were warned.
“This is Africa. We may be delayed, but not denied.”
Yes, we heard this a lot on our trip.
From day one, when we arrived at our camp at Victoria Falls, a dark green Africa Travels truck was waiting by our campsite. I was surprised that this was not the bright orange Gecko’s truck I was expecting. But, our guide informed us, that ours was in the shop, but would be with us shortly.
So, we loaded in our belongings and headed off Chobe, Botswana where our truck was replaced by another, larger Africa Travels truck. Our guide was not happy about the situation, but we didn’t care, we had a truck and that was all that mattered.
And, everything was great, until the day we had to leave Botswana, drive through Namibia, and enter Botswana again in order to get to our campsite in the Okavango Delta.
We stopped at the border to re-enter Namibia and while we sat eating lunch, we could tell that something was not right. Our driver, guide, and chef anxiously tried to address the problem, but they had no luck. Our truck was dead at the border, and we were stuck there too, already exited from Namibia and entered into Botswana.
Though, this situation could have been a lot worse. We could have been stuck in a park surrounded by lions, cheetahs, and leopards. Or, we could have been on a road in the middle of nowhere with no one around us. The border was the perfect place to break down.
The situation was explained, our stamps were canceled, and we were going to spend the night in Namibia.
But, since our only method of transportation to the campsite was in the back of camp owner’s pick up truck, we had some time to kill before all nineteen of us, and all of our belongings, including food could be carted over.
Since I was the group that headed over second, we had a lot of time to kill. We started with emptying the cooler.
Then, since we had to get out the sleeping mats, we decided to jump into them, then bury ourselves, and take a nap.
Then, we used the sleeping mats as a couch while we waited.
And, hung out, watching the African grass grow, and hoping that nothing crawled out from inside of it.
Until, finally, a few hours later, our chariot arrived.
And, from the back of that truck, we felt the African wind blow through our hair while we watched the magnificent sun set, as we drove on the dirt roads to the campsite.
Sure, it wasn’t exactly the way we wanted to spend our afternoon, but at least we had a place to sleep for the night, and we made the best of our situation. Yes, once it turned dark, we may have almost hit a cow on the road heading to the camp, and Jade may have made a new unwanted friend in the camp site owner’s dog, but overall it was one of the most memorable afternoons of the trip. And, since it was still just the beginning, I think it helped bring us all a little closer together.