. Still to this day, I don't think I can pronounce his name. It had some weird sounds that I can remember now, but I was glad that I never had to call him by his name. Less than 40 mins into he country, I was seeing all kinds of wild life from giraffe and warthogs on the side of the road. I was getting giddy, like a 4 year old at the zoo seeing animals for the frist time. I could not wait for the actual safari to start. The next morning I got up early so that I would have as much time as I wanted in Choebe National park. I arrived at the gates, bought my pass, got my map and off I went. The park is thousands of acres, and I wanted to see as much of it as possible. I had already seen one of the big five animals of africa, being the rhino in Zambia, so I wanted to complete the set shall we say. At first, I stuck to all the main trails, kind of tailing the group safaris to get the hang of everything. As time went, I got more adventurous and decided to take a path less travelled. I was kilometers from the closest group of people, on a quiet sandy path, when there it was through a break in the trees. An elephant, and heading in my direction. I turned the car off and got my camera ready. I was so excited to see one. I could see that the path it was traveling, it would pass withing 20 meters of the truck. NICE!!! But then reality set in. I have no experience, know how, or information of what I am supposed to do around these amazing animals. And if anything were to end up happening, I would be shit out of luck by myself
. I tried to remain as calm and quiet as I could while taking pics. It was three elephants and one of which was a calf. The one and only thing I do know, just like most animals in the wild, mothers can get protective. The last thing I wanted to do was piss this thing off. Luckily, all went well and they passed me without incident. My heart was pounding, what a rush. By the end of this day though, I would see more elephants than I would know what to do with. It actually got to the point that I didn't even take anymore pics of them. This single day, I would see more wildlife than I had in my entire life combined. On my second day back at the park, I decided to go to the other main entrance to see what different animals I could see. I also wanted to see a different region of the park as well. As I made my way through the 70 km park, I saw something ahead crossing the road. Not one animal, but a back of them. I accelerated a bit to see what they were. It was a pack of roughly 30 zebra. I came to a complete stop on the road and rushed to grab my camera. The majority of them scurried off into the bushes, but the last one in the pack, stopped to take a look at me. It turned sideways to give me a perfect profile shot. They truly are amazing looking animals. The thing that I loved about Choebe national park, was that even around the parimeter of the park, there was no fence. This allows the animals to go freely where ever their hearts desire. If you are an animal lover or wildlife enthusiast, I would highly recommend putting Botswana on your list of places to visit
. It was a experience that I will never forget. I took so many pictures here only because everything you see seems to blow your mind. One thing about my time here though, was that this was the first time on my trip that I had truely and completely been 100% solo. Up to this point, I had been in populated places that there is always someone around, fellow travellers, my hosts, whatever. After being alone for a couple days, I found myself turning into my mom.... and talking to myself...and the camera. I have some silly clips of me rambling, trying to explain where I am, what I am doing, what animals are around. Some of it doesn't even make sense. I was just trying to capture the moment I guess. I decided enough was enough, and after 13 hours of driving myself around the national park in two days, it was time to make my way back to Namibia. I had to make good time too since the border would close at 6 pm. I had literally hundreds of pics of animals and scenery. I got exactly what I came here for. A chance to connect with the African wilderness.
Botswana is one of those countries that you hear about, and think that you will never in your wildest dream visit. I mean, what the hell do I know about it....not a damn thing. I arrived at the border, with a rough map in hand and a general idea of a lodge or two to stay at, that's it. I entered at the Ngoma border crossing, just off the Caprivi strip of Namibia. My plan here as to visit Choebe National park and spend some time checking out the wildlife and playing around with my camera. The town I would be staying in was called Kasane, located just a few killometers from the park. You actually had to drive through the park to get there. On my way through the main gates as I was finished signing in, a man asked me if I was heading to Kasane and if he could get a lift. Why not I figure I could use some company and ask him some questions about the country. He informed me that the whole country only has 1.5 million people, which is really peanuts. I think that there is more animals there than there is people. He pointed out some economy lodges for me to check out, which turned out very helpful