Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Sunday & Monday, November 8 & 9, 2015: Driving from Sossusvlei to Windhoek and Flying to Johannesburg, South Africa


As is normal in the desert and we are more fully realizing, when the sun sets, the temperature reduces. Last night while we were eating it became almost cool enough for a light jacket.  The cool night allowed us a good night’s sleep. Talking about temperatures in the sand – when walking barefooted, the hot sand can burn the bottom of your feet, but if you wiggle your feet into the sand by 2-3 inches, it is amazingly cool. We learned this the other morning while looking for creatures in the desert.  They are not dummies, they bury themselves in 3-4 inches of sand and stay cool. 

Today we are driving back to Windhoek, as we are flying out on Monday.  We do not know the conditions of the roads and we have a total of 550 km (350 mi) to go. We did not rush leaving Desert Quiver Lodge, but were on the way by 8:30.  We had one mountain pass to wind through and some rough gravel roads, while others were so smooth that we could go 110 km/hr. (65 mi/hr.), but we arrived back in Windhoek at around 4:00pm.

Countryside along the Road

A rare Farmhouse

A view from Zarishoogte Pass

Goats Grazing along the Road

Vineyard near Hardap Dam

Wheat Filed near the Dam

Another Quiver tree

Hardap Dam - Notice how low the water level is
Tonight for dinner we went to Joe’s Beerhouse – What a totally unique place.  “All Roads Lead to Joe’s”! I don’t even know how to describe this place. It is a very popular spot with mock olde worlde interior. It is FULL of antiques/junk!/beer bottles/lots of empty J├Ągermeister bottles/things are hanging from the ceiling/stuff is setting everywhere/there is private seating in many little coves/common tables where you have no idea who will be next to you.   We had not made a reservation so we were at a common table. Two other couples joined us, one from Belgium who have just arrived in Namibia and a Dutch couple who has just spent 3 weeks in Namibia.  We hope to go back tomorrow before we go to the airport to take a few photos, as tonight we forgot the camera.

We will sleep in tomorrow morning. We go to the Windhoek airport around noon.


Monday –

You can only imagine how dusty our rental vehicle was after driving on gravel hour after hour.  Hertz Rental, and I am sure all the rest are the same, charge ($35.00) to clean your vehicle!  So this morning we had 2 guys at our accommodations, wash and vacuum ($7.00) the vehicle before we go to the airport.  They did a thorough job – the back bed of the 4x4, which had a topper on it, had layer upon layer of dust! - We kept all of our items in the second seat to avoid the dust!

When we made our first plans, we planned to drive back to Windhoek from Sossusvlei today.  Thank goodness we changed those plans, as it would have been a rush to get to the airport.  This way we were able to go to Joe’s Beerhouse before heading to the airport.   

Our Dusty Isuzu 4x4

Our Accommodations in Windhoek
We arrived at the airport with plenty time to spare, in fact we had to wait in the boarding room for 2 hours before the plane loaded.  The plane we were on was an airbus that had all kinds of open seats.  We flew Air Namibia and the service on the plane is what American airlines used to be.  A two-hour flight with beverages and a full meal.

After clearing passport check and baggage claim we met our friend at the airport.  It was really great seeing her again.  It has been over two years.  The drive to their house is usually 2 ½ hrs. but because of the traffic it was 3 hrs. today.  After arriving we had dinner and turned in for the night.

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