Ah, morning. Late morning. Victoria Falls Town is small, one main road with several side streets and a market. For one wonderful hour I potter around the tourist shops. I spot a fresh fruit and vegetable store and establish that the seller will be there on the day we leave. There are no tarpaulins, a request from Mike, but there are rechargeable batteries. Victoria Falls is very expensive for tourists but Robert and Woocash go adventuring; they twist and turn through streets to end up at a real local market where prices are cheap. I kind of wish they had told me about it. With unerring skills, Robert also discovers the best place to buy chicken and sadza. Its in the petrol station.
The Internet remains a flirtatious tease for both Emma and I. Eventually, I manage to update the blog and put money on my post office card whilst watching elephants and vultures. I like vultures. They keep the place tidy, aren’t picky about their food and look glorious gliding in the sky.
With excellent timing, my driving licence has expired. It’s a small logistical issue, I can renew it through the World Wide Web, which is awesome. (Being able to do this from Zimbabwe is somehow more amazing than from a laptop in the UK). And we will have to detour to Harare, the capital of Zimbabwe, to collect it from Robert’s house, providing it arrives in time. Woocash is the only legal driver in the meantime.
Whilst emptying and cleaning the car thoroughly, this cheeky monkey ended up in the driving seat holding the steering wheel! He admires Cleopatra as much as I do. But retreated to the tree when he saw me.
After that, Woocash went to make friends with him. I don’t think he was so keen.
I did the biggest shop of the whole trip, as we won’t be passing any towns for 2 weeks or more. Way to much to fit in the storage trays, the extra food has to be stashed behind and under seats as if it is contraband. What are you smuggling? Tinned tuna, pilchards and tomatoes. Yummy. My speedy shopping style is destroyed at the till, after 45 minutes trying every card machine in the shop, bless the cashier. I ended up running to the nearest cash point.
We have two fantastically touristy indulgent wonderful evenings.
If you are hungry this is the best experience. There is dressing up and dances and food and face painting and more food and dessert and more desserts and drumming. Happiness glows around our table as we munch our way through all the different flavours.
Booze cruise and elephants
The next afternoon, we are floating on the Zambezi before the falls and we can have as much alcohol as we want. Woocash doesn’t usually drink but it’s an offer he can’t refuse, he turns out to be adorably smiley after a couple of glasses of gin. I highly recommend the cruise if you are drinker and love animals. The captain points out rare birds and we search the shores for crocodiles.
Afterwards we head out for dinner with an amazing view of a waterhole. Suddenly, there are gasps from the diners as people realise a large tribe of elephants are present. One walks right below our deck for a snack on the tree below us. Silently they appeared and then, slowly, their grey outlines dissolve into the night.
And then far far too soon it’s over and it’s the next day and we are leaving and I feel like I hardly rested or saw the town. Emma is not happy as she starts the run and it is difficult to know what to do.
Number of Days: 39
Total distance run by Emma: 1641 km, 1019 miles
Daily average distance run by Emma (including rest days): 42 km, 26.1 miles
Distance run today: 0 km, 0 miles
Absolutely the best couple of days. But it must have been tough getting back to the day job.
More than tough.