Getting Ready:The Prequel

A few common questions addressed.

There are many parts of the world that we’d like to visit and understand a little better. Africa in general and Southern Africa specifically simply rose to the top of the list.

We didn’t want a package or a group tour. Suspecting this might be a once in a lifetime visit we wanted experiences that would give us a variety of perspectives yet accommodate the lifestyle to which we’ve become accustomed. Less than 2 months before we hoped to go, we asked our long suffering travel agent, Mel @ Maritime Travel, to assist us in putting together an interesting itinerary. She in turn found Rhino Africa, a travel organizer based in Cape Town. We communicated our interests and aspirations and Rhino proved to be a good listener. In short order, after a bit of toing and froing they produced an itinerary that sounded about right at the time and proved to be so. They took it from there and I have to say they did an exemplary job. Every driver was where they were supposed to be at the right time, every lodging facility was ready and waiting for us, every flight had us on record. Of course, we had to adopt certain personas to ensure it all worked (see discussion re Gerald Stewart) but work it did. Rhino did an excellent job in a short time frame

The actual departure date was a little earlier than we anticipated and we had to scramble to make sure we had all the shots and drugs in place. Concerns around Malaria, Yellow Fever, Typhoid Fever and various intestinal considerations all had to be addressed. It was beginning to sound a little less appealing but we soldiered on and managed to get the appointments we needed. Between Capital Health, our GP and Shoppers we racked up bills of almost $900. Be warned, if you follow in our footsteps!

The only other thing we had to ensure was that we had a passport that wouldn’t expire within 6 months and had at least two blank pages in it. It turns out that African officials really, really like to stamp things. We’d already renewed our passport in contemplation of a trip such as this so we were good to go. All we had left to do was pack and get to the airport.

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