Are You Ready to Rock?

Trip Start Jul 25, 2006
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Namibia  ,
Saturday, September 15, 2007

Before we go any further, you need to know something about Namibia. It's big, very big. It's very dusty. There's not a lot of people here either. In a country this big, this dry, this barren, a lot of their attractions centre around rocks. It's that kind of place.

The following day, we pack up and headed off in the wilds of Damaraland. First stop was the VingerKelp, or Finger Rock. There's nothing like nature flipping you the bird to remind you of your insignificance in the greater scheme of things. See the photos.

After the Finger Rock, we head to the Petrified Forest . Despite the name, I did not find myself particularly frightened. I was fascinated by the hundreds of rocks laying on the ground that had so obviously been trees in a former life, like, millions of years ago. Sometimes we take nature and its processes for granite. (Hehe). Ouch, sorry, that was a bit uncalled for. Let's start with a clean slate, shale we? (Hehe - Wade, I know you're loving these even if everyone else hates me now).

Our last stop of the day was Twyfelfontein. Over 250 rock engravings have been found here, carved by the San people. Because of the nature of the medium (gouged rock instead of staining or paint), it is difficult to exactly date the carvings, but archaeologists have placed them between 6000 years to 2000 years ago, oldest to youngest. They represent both animals that the San hunted, as well as a prehistoric 'map' of waterholes that once dotted the region (all long since dried up and gone).

Some of the carvings show the range that early San hunters covered. Two of the carvings are of a penguin and a seal, animals from a coast close to 200 kilometres away.

Other carvings show some of the animals this area used to support. Most of these animals have long since disappeared from the region.

This one apparently is of a giraffe humping a oryx, a type of large antelope. Or at least that is my professional opinion as a History teacher.

After a long, hot, and dry drive we arrived in Sesfontien. This is a little settlement of tin shacks, mud huts, and strangely, an 19th century German fortress turned into a hotel. We tented in the dust of the fort, safely segregated from the 'real' guests, lest we frighten them with our dirty clothes, dirty hair, and flatulence from a diet of canned beans and spaghetti and meatballs for over four days running.
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