BootsnAll Travel Network

July 22nd – Ghanzi, Botswana to Maun, Botswana

I woke up at 7am to go to the bathroom, but my body felt like it was 8am with the time difference so I was up and at it.  I got some breakfast and sat around the campfire with JB, Elizabeth and Gabby.  We were just chatting and passing the time and I asked JB a few questions about Zimbabwe to learn about the situation and how it really is there.  It was interesting to learn about it.  People started slowly waking up coming out of their tents, getting breakfast and then afterwards the people who went on the game drive came back.  I also made time to fix Harriet’s phone.  I have been  the master of fixing electronics on this trip.  The two things I couldn’t fix was Rob’s headlight and his camera, but I have fixed Alex’s camera twice, Hannah’s first camera, Harriet’s phone and other things.  Just call me Mcguiver.


Before I knew it, it was time to pack up the truck and get a move on.  We got on the truck and headed off for Maun which is near the Okavango Delta.  Before we ventured off we first took a decent walk to see some lions.  It was hard to see them as they were in their dens, but I got a glimpse of both the male and the female.  Then we ventured off and now we are on the road.  Since I don’t read the itinerary so I am surprised as to what will happen, I have no idea what we are doing today and I like it.  I do know we will be stopping at a bank in the afternoon as a lot of people need money including myself.  I am going to try hard to get as much US Dollars as I can.  I need them desperately for a lot of things.  I can use the Pulla which is Botswana’s currency in Zimbabwe but the dollar will go a lot further.  I also need the US Dollars for the Visa to Zimbabwe and maybe Zambia and I want to give the tip to JB and Mike in US Dollars but I think I will ask them up front what they prefer.  I don’t want them to have to get charged in exchanging the dollars to rand or whatever currency they need.  When we arrived in Maun we set up our tents, and then were briefed on our trip to the Okavango Delta.  The Delta is the largest in land delta in the world, with tons of wildlife.  This will be the wilderness with no holds bar between us and the animals.


After the briefing the guys and I played some football to pass the time before lunch.  After lunch we chilled out and took a ride in to town.  But before going to town I tried and swap currency with the dude who ran the campsite but he told me know.  When we got to Maun, there wasn’t much open.  It was the weekend but there was one atm, some supermarkets and other shops.  Before I left for town the guy who ran the place also told me to look for a shop called Open Door.  There I could possibly change Pulla to US dollars.  He said even though it was the weekend that it should still be open.  So I was on a mission to find that place as well as money.  When I first got off the truck I tried to go to a pawn shop, but after walking down a shady alleyway I took a detour in to town.  I went to the ATM machine, and once I realized I could take money out, so I ran and happen to find Open Door.  Even though the sign said it was closed, the security guard said I could come back and he would let me in.  So I had to run all the way back to the bank, had to wait online, kept it quiet so others wouldn’t run with me, then I ran all the way back to open door.  When I got to Open Door, the guard let me in but the lady at the first teller booth refused to do it for me claiming that her money was counted already.  The other lady overheard me and then I told her that I had no money left and was leaving for Zimbabwe and needed US Dollars.  She said ok and changed the money for me.  The rate was terrible and I think I lost about 25 US with the conversion but having US Dollars is crucial in Zimbabwe.


After I got my money I walked back and went to the Supermarket to buy water for the Delta.  I bought chips, booze and a 5 liter bottle of water.  When we got back to the campsite, we chilled out till dinner, had some pre-dinner drinks.  Dinner was great as usual and then it was time to head to the bar.  There were a lot of other trucks at the campsite and the bar was jumping.  I ended up having a great night with the gang that ended with me getting pushed in the pool and then Hannah and I danced around the campfire like tribespeople to stay warm.  Tomorrow would be an early morning as we were off to the Delta.


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