Day 23 - morning
Day 16 - Northern Experience Tour
35 Celsius, hot sunny morning
Up at 6:00am, breakfast at 7:00am and ready for my outing at 8:00am. Talk about being on a schedule on a day of rest, especially a Sunday morning! But there was a reason behind this!
This morning, Michel and I went on an optional activity organized by the lodge. Only two couples chose to participate in this activity and we were one of them.
The weather was nice, sunny and already hot for this early hour of the morning. But who's complaining! It’s been like this since the beginning of our overland tour!
We were met at the lodge by a local black guide by the name of Lanko. Young, tall and skinny, he had postsecondary education and passion in his voice when he spoke. We rapidly followed him down a path that led us to a small village within walking distance of the lodge. Alex tagged along.
You’re probably wondering by now what my optional activity was! Since we had the chance to visit two small villages and see firsthand how the people of the Kavango Region of Namibia lived on a day to day basis, we jumped on the occasion! The excursion’s fee was paid; quite a minimal amount but huge for these people!
The first village consisted of five huts. They were homes to four related families who lived there in harmony, the grandfather being the chief. They’ve been waiting for us and were all smiles and nicely dressed when we arrived.
While they sat on either rocks or on the ground, the small children were with them. None of them jumped all over us as the Himba kids did!
Lanko explained to us how these people lived, slept and ate on a day to day basis. Without any water being irrigated to their small community village, they carried it themselves in large buckets from the Kavango River being more than several hundred meters away! They even washed their clothes, dishes and took their bath in it.
Their huts were mainly made of tree branches or the most grandiose ones having dried mud as walls! But when it rained, these were the first ones to go! As for the interior space, it was quite minimal where large number of people slept on the dirt floors.
These were the living conditions of the poor people of this region but they were survivors and proud people. We could see it on their faces even though they were deprived of the basic necessities.
As a gesture of gratitude for opening to us their village, I gave several boxes of candies to the chief, the only things I had with me at the time. While thanking me in an African language, he rapidly put them away in his jacket’s pocket.
As we left, I hoped that he’d at least share it with the children and not keep it all to himself! A group picture was taken of all of us smiling for the camera! :-)
To be continued…..Monique :-)