Discovering the Okavango Delta
The management (Grant and Dimari) were jealous after we recounted our exploits from the day before. They wanted to go out exploring as well. They are normally so busy either maintaining the camp in low season or looking after guests in high season they rarely get a chance to go out. They asked if we would like to go out again in the boat but even further. Silly question. They asked if we minded if they came as well as the camp was so quiet. Another silly question. Every sunrise and sunset in the bush is spectacular. That morning the sunrise was particularly stunning. We met at breakfast to discuss plans. Unfortunately that morning they had just heard that the government health inspector was arriving by helicopter that day and Dimari would have to stay behind to supervise. These no notice inspections are very thorough and indicative of the very high standards demanded by the national government at these camps. They do not only check hygiene but also ensure that all camp waste is disposed of in the approved manner. They also check sanitary standards and the disposal of wastewater and well as many other points. It is a full day inspection and failure would result in the camp being closed with no questions asked. Needless to say they passed with flying colours but unfortunately that was Dimari out of play for the day.
Again we had said just a few sandwiches would be okay, but no. They only have one standard and that didn’t comply. We set off in a boat loaded with tables, chairs, picnic baskets, bar boxes, tablecloths and glasses. Guide and tracker, us, Grant (complete with swimming trunks and towel) and Masego. Well, we couldn’t be expected to serve ourselves, could we! The channel was a bit easier this time as we had already passed through it twice. We think however that Grant was a little shocked to see the treatment the engine got and was thinking of his maintenance budget.
Fun adventures in Botswana
We passed the point we had got to the previous day and then just carried on for hours. We saw a fair number of hippos in the open water, many herds of antelope on the banks and some of the biggest crocodiles we had ever seen. We stopped at a large island and set up camp. ‘I thought you were going swimming’ I said to Grant. This big tough ex South African professional rugby player had changed his mind!<</p>
But he got the fish
I am claiming a ¾ kill. Getting one on the hook but losing it in the water I think should be ¼. Getting one out of the water but it falling back in off the hook is definitely a ½. Lunch was served in style, of course. We were pleased that they had heeded our request for a light lunch, it was just perfect.
A fresh fish dinner in Botswana
Sitting back relaxing in the shade I asked Grant what his contingency plan was if the boat broke down. He informed me that he would just call in the other boat to rescue us. This was flawed on three counts; 1, We were out of radio contact. 2, The other boat was broken. 3, Only Master knew the way to where we were. We didn’t care as a night out in the bush would have been fun! Build a fire, plenty of fish in the water, lots of food left over and a full cool box. We made it back just before dark. We had been out for eight hours. One of the greatest days we have ever had on safari.