norfolkdoc

By norfolkdoc

Owl House

Back blipped on 3rd March

We moved on from our most recent lodgings today.  These haven't been quite to our preference.  We had booked a self catering place, complete with small but complete kitchen area.  Unfortunately there was a fault with the geysir in this flat, so the owner had arranged with his sister-in-law to put us up in her guest house.  She and her husband were really friendly and desperate to be helpful, but their little guest room wasn't really a functional self-catering room.  The kitchen area was much smaller – no sink, no hob, just a microwave.  We had to request a toaster to make our morning toast, and a salad bowl for our evening meals.  Washing up our mugs in the wash hand basin was difficult, I broke one.

So we actually left a day early.  We'd originally left 3 days (2 nights) open for a leisurely return to the west, but have instead taken one of those nights along with tonight and are staying 2 nights in the Mountain Zebra Park.  We've booked the early morning drive for tomorrow, and the night drive as well.  We may take a short self drive around the park during the day, but intend to have a mainly slothful day, in contrast to our last few days.  Only disadvantage – no WiFi. 

So we've only moved a few kilometres, but we took a long diversion via Nieu Bethesda, to visit The Owl House, and also a fossil museum.  The Owl House was fascinating.  I took lots of photos and struggled to decide on which to blip.  Eventually, with the help of W, decided on this picture of the “entrance arch” that isn't, guarded with a fearsome cactus and a wire fence.  Helen Martins was clearly a complex character, and this is reflected in her relationships with the rest of the village, and particularly in her art work and the way she has decorated her house and yard.  We also enjoyed a fascinating visit to a fossil museum, including a short guided walk along the bed of the local river, currently totally dry, to see some fossils in situ.  This is a fossil rich part of the world.  

On our drive to and from Nieu Bethesda we passed a number of privately owned Game Parks, and along with many springbok, we saw several buck that are not normally seen in this area.  We saw Sable antelope (normally found in the north east of South Africa, Lechwe (normally found in the Okavango swamp in the far north) and Scimitar Oryx, from sub-Saharan Africa.

We also spent some time watching a ground squirrel at the side of the road, and we spotted a secretary bird.  My photos of this are hopeless as he was much too far away, in scrubland, so half hidden, and mostly had his back to us, walking further away.  But good to see him as they are regarded as vulnerable, and are not particularly common.  Some extras of the wildlife.

Edit - I've combined the extras into a collage

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