Awesome, awesome,awesome!! What a break!!!
Some time ago, a colleague / friend at work asked if I wanted to accompany him and some family members and friends on their annual hunting trip. Now I don't hunt, but was keen to go along for the social side of the trip. It's usually a bunch of guys, who, between and after hunts, spend time chilling, braaing, talking shit, having a few drinks, and just generally having a boys break. I accepted as I was really getting to "stess" point at work, and was needing some time out.
So, I took leave for Wed, Thur and Frid, and we set off at 5am Wed morning. We went north(ish), to a place close to the Botswana border. great drive, breakfast at Wimpy in Ellisras, but the road was 90% misty. never seen it so bad for so long. Anyway, we got there, and it was like being on a different continent. For the past few weeks it's been raining almost continuously here in Jo'burg, it's been damn cold and miserable. Up there, it was sun shine, damn hot, and although they had had some good rain earlier in the year, was now dry.
Anyway, we arrived just before lunch time, and moved into the lodgings. Very, very rustic. It's an old farmhouse, where they have closed up what used to be the verandas, and made sleeping quarters of the whole building. 3 beds on the back veranda, 3 beds in first bedroom, 3 beds plus a double bunk in the second, 3 beds in the third, 3 x double bunks on the back veranda and 3 beds in the original dining area. The house has not been well maintained, the baths and showers and toilets added after the original build, as well as most of the plumbing and electrics. However, it was usable, and king of OK. For me, at ZAR160 a day as a non hunter, a bargain. Although the sagging bed has left me with some chronic back pain!
The outside braai area was great. A nice newish lapa, fireplace for braai with coals, another with gas cookers, a big fridge for the booze, a bar counter, big dining table, ample chairs, a boma and a TV with full DSTV, so we could watch the cricket and rugby!!!
A good time was had by all, but two of the hunters, a father and son, have a serious problem with booze. The father got totally shit faced every night, and also started drinking from when he got up, so having him in the field with a hunting rifle was really a dangerous situation, but he hardly managed to kill one buck, never mind any one else!
His son is following in his steps. he's an only child, and behaves like one. Little respect for his elders, and the drunker he got the fouler his mouth, so that did put a bit of a damper on things. But overall, a great break from the slave trade for me.
Some pics, in no particular order, as this f'ing application now gives me lines of code as opposed to pictures, so it's not so easy to move them, or label them. Anyway:-
Sunset on out last night there.
A young kudu buck (after 4 days of hunting for a kudu with no luck, this hunter took what he could get) as well as a young rooibok (Impala) and what I classified as a glovebox piggy (a young warthog).
A "naked Eland, in the cooler.
A herd of now deceased, and naked, Impala.
Impala ewe being slaughtered. Unfortunately the nature of the landscape did not allow for close up shooting, so head shots were difficult. Therefore, most shots weere directed at the front leg, for maximum effect to hit vital organs such as heart and lungs. But this also meant that some of the meat was spoilt, as can be seen on this photo.
View from my bed, on the back veranda. Doors and window openings only had bird and mosquito mesh, no glass!
The boma and fire pit.
The fridge, day 1. on side / 1 shelf per person. By Sunday am when we were leavong there was 2 beers, a half bottle of coke, and probably 3 shots of whiskey left...
View of the bush from the house.
Ok, due to the unacceptable abuse of alcohol, and abusive nature of two of our "partners this weekend, we will be looking for other hunters to replace these two for next years trip. We will also find a different venue, with a bit better accommodation facilities, and hopefully easier to find game. Anyone who's interested in coming along, let me know, and I will get the details, and we can arrange. Fishman, maybe you want to go along> I think you would fit in quite well.
The three other 'non hunters" like me, were 3 old guys. Great guys. They were designated "camp commanders" and took care of the fire, getting brunch ready, and preparing for supper, so when the hunters got back to camp o most of it was ready. Just made tings smoother and easier. They are great old guys, and were good company.
For me, it was a great chill time. Read, sleep, take short walks, watch the slaughter, help the old guys, drink more than I have consumed in the past 12 months, but remained sober.... A great time. Now it's back to work, to satans daughter, and all the associated challenges.
But, I will be on the next trip for sure.
Only down side was we got back Sunday afternoon, and Sunday is / was Mothers Day, and I would / so should rather have been home with the Princess, but she forgave me! Thanxs Luv!!!
Roll on new job!