November - December 2019
  • Day16

    Back to Windhoek

    November 30, 2019 in Namibia ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    Pictures taken on the way to Windhoek, plus the pictures of the supermarket, Spar. We shopped in this store in other part of country, too. The parking lot was totally packed. I can’t believe it was the same store we stopped for grocery on the very first afternoon after we just picked up the car. It looked so different by how lively and busy it was.

    We were ahead of time to return the car, so we stopped for ice creams then came here to see if Finn could find Twin blade razor heads for his Gillette razor. Nowadays the razor heads have 3-5 blades which are hard to use in upper lips. Finn said maybe he could find the “old fashioned” twin blades here, however, the store also didn’t have them. I later bought five packs for him online in the US.
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  • Day16

    The Elegant Farm

    November 30, 2019 in Namibia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    The last day in Africa. Finn booked this place from booking.com but started to regret as soon as he turned to D2102, a corrugated gravel road. A severely corrugated gravel road was one of the worst roads to drive on. The car shakes in such a short and quick rhythm with deafening noise that makes you feel the car, and yourself, are about to fall apart. He didn’t prepare that the “farm” was in such a remote and hilly area and worried that he might not get the WiFi as promised. The anxiety ran high even though the wifi was good enough to allow him to check in with the KLM. He resented the poor attitude of the receptionist who I also found very cold and even rude. The room was so far from the parking lot that made it impossible to pack the luggages in the room. We had to take everything out of the car in the parking lot and pack our bags there.

    The pool water looked too green to be clean. The “living room” area and garden were well manicured. Chairs, sofas, cushions and even day beds. Finn thought it was phony. I agreed. However they did look nice on the pictures.

    We met two German couples, very strange people. They won’t give you the slightest smile or a greeting even if they stared you right into your eyes. Most of time they avoided to look at people. Another couple, also from Germany, was very nice, always smile and exchanging a few simple words. The wife was on the wheelchair and her husband pushed her all over, including higher steps. We checked out almost the same time, and two hours later, I saw them crossing street in front of us in Windhoek.

    We didn’t get the three course meal for dinner, it’s too much food. Fortunately, the kitchen allowed us to only take the main course and charged us N$165 pp. The dish was too salty to my taste but overall very good. Finn had a glass of white wine and I had a beer. I have been drinking this beer, Windhoek Lager, the whole time.

    The breakfast was quite impressive, in addition to the regular cold cut and cheese it had smoked salmon. I had a lot of salmon, plus an omelette. Again, the omelette was too salty. I didn’t finish it.

    We left the “farm” at 9:45, 15 earlier than our planned time. The driving on the gravel road seemed not as bad as the way we came in. It’s the second time we had such a feeling. Last time was to Messum Crater. The road was very shaky on the way in to the Crater even though Finn drove on the “both sides” of the road, trying to find a smoother surface.

    One thing that needs to mention was that due to the limited space of my backpack I decided to discard my flippers which I used for gym for two years and looked more worn after only one day standing on a sandy ground. So, I put into a waste basket in the room along with other trash, including a swimming suit. When we came back from dinner the room was tidied up again but the flippers were gone. Finn said he was not surprised (I was). I should have also left my old T-shirts out which could be useful to someone. The next day Finn gave the chamber pillow case I brought for the trip but prepared to throw away to a guy sweeping the yard. Most people in the country were quite poor.
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  • Day15

    Spitzkoppe (2)

    November 29, 2019 in Namibia ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Bang, bang, bang... we were awoken by this loud and quick banging sound in the morning. I was frightened. Coming from a city I immediately thought it could be a policeman at the door who was going to bring us some bad news. We rushed to put on clothes and opened the back door cautiously. Nobody was there while the banging sound still went on. We went to the front of the car and saw the birds with big beak standing in the front windshield. They were picking on the rubber around windshield! Darn it! They scared me to death. Finn said some birds liked picking on rubber. Once his friend found all rubber was gone overnight.

    We started our routine of the morning. Finn decided to take the shower with the water in the tank. However, the water heat didn’t work. The water pressure was very low after we have been using the water during whole trip. He ended up taking a cold shower. I declined to do so. He’s good at saving waters. With that small stream of water he finished showed in five minutes. We would stay in a resort tonight and I’d prefer a hot shower.

    After breakfast we e
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  • Day14

    Spitzkoppe, (1)

    November 28, 2019 in Namibia ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    Finn picked Spitzkoppe as a destination.

    My “Namibia” book said “ the highest is Spitzkoppe, which at 1,728m towers 600m above the surrounding plains: a demanding technical climb. Its resemble to the famous Swiss mountain earned it the name of Matterhorn of Arica, while the extreme conditions found on its faces ensured that t remained unclimbed until 1946.“ The writer, Chris McIntyre, also highly recommended this campsite and said this belonged to the community and “is well worth supporting”.

    However, we were very skeptical and worried when getting close to the campsite. A lot of local, poor houses around. Kids stood in the front ofof their souvenir stands and wove at us. We feared we might camp right in the middle of all these. It was a big surprise when we drove inside the campsite. More than a campsite it’s a “mountain park” that has the whole mountain area closed-in and the campsites scattered around the hill base. The distance from the very left campsite to the very right one can be two miles apart (my guessing), and each campsite was shaped by the natural curve of the hill curve. Finn drove around and finally turned to the campsite No. 14 which was far from the road. It was amazing to have a mountain in the “backyard”, like we owned it. The mountains were granite-like rocks, and some lower ones shaped like buns, the mild slope and even surface made it very easy to walk up. For Finn it was like “back home”. He spent years and traveled around the world to climb rocks. He looked at the cliffs that went straight up and assessed how he could climb it. He showed me the small cracks where to land the feet but the hands, if no cracks to hold, simple put on the rocks and let the friction take the weight. The hands became leathery after the skins were pilled off too many times.

    Finn opened the canopy shade, so we used every function that the car provided. It was quite big and not too hard to open. I used the last available food to cook dinner, grilled chicken breasts in tomato mushroom sauce. We will stay in a hotel tomorrow so it’s better to consume every bit of the food.

    Birds gathered around and looked for some scraps when we were having dinner A pair of birds with huge beaks were the most fearless ones. They landed on the tree next to us and won’t leave. Finn took out his camera and approached one that landed on the lower branch, one step at a time until it flew away when he got really close. I was behind the scene and took many shots of the bird and Finn.

    It was still bright after the dinner. We walked up a rock and sat there to watch sunset. Through binoculars I could see a small animal going up along the ridge of the hill. It would be nice to stay out longer. However, Finn didn’t feel safe. He pointed the poops on the ground and said he wasn’t sure which kind of animals have been here, what if it was a kind of predator. I didn’t think it was. The poop looked like from the animals that ate vegetation, not meat. But if he didn’t like it it was no fun to stay longer.
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  • Day14

    Leaving Swakopmund to Spitzkoppen

    November 28, 2019 in Namibia ⋅ ⛅ 29 °C

    It took a few extra turns to find B2 outside of Swakopmund. Finn had the sense of direction but the road took us to some residential area. Speaking of which we saw quite a few new developments, especially outskirts of Swakopmund. Looked like the population in the area is growing.

    Once got onto B2, the land was nothing special except dry, dry and dry. Not even grass in the sight. Long before we reached Spitzkoppen Finn pointed at the rock hills far in the horizon and said he felt “this is where we are going”. Well, as how things turned out he was always right.
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  • Day14

    From Hentiesbaai to Swakopmund

    November 28, 2019 in Namibia ⋅ 🌙 16 °C

    The pictures below:

    Atlantic Ocean; Finn’s toe drawing on the sand; car tracks on the beach; an outskirt town when we left the highway a little too early. All new developments Quite impressive; the last picture was taken in the Swakopmund, its landmark building, the prison.Read more