Out in Africa, part 1

January 4, 2009 Jordana

So, one nice thing about being in Africa is that I won’t be obsessively checking my weight gain for the next month. The scales here are in kg, which I don’t speak. This is good, because there is creamy and delicious chocolate.

We have spent the past few days in Johannesburg at the home of some family friends, relaxing and trying to adjust from jet lag. The kids have had a rough time making the adjustment, with lots of night wakings, bad dreams, and perkiness around midnight, but here on day 4, things seem to be getting a bit better. The Husbandlet and I have been pretty much not sleeping (see above re: kidlets’ response to jet lag), also because we’re just not tired when the clock says we should be. However, after several nights of Not Much Sleep, I predict that we will crash tonight at a reasonable time.

The family friends’ house comes equipped with two exceedingly patient dogs and two amazingly long-suffering cats. Ngaire has totally overcome all fears of big dogs (Liam never had any) and both of them spend a lot of time kissing/hugging/cuddling/talking to/lying on top of the various animals.

We haven’t been doing much aside from walking to playgrounds and grocery stores, and hanging out in this amazingly gorgeous house, except for today, when we went to the Johannesburg Zoo. The lion section has a glass-walled room that you can stand inside to get up close and personal with the lions. A big male came up and rubbed against the glass right next to Ngaire, who spent the rest of our time there running around the room trying to get close to him again. We rounded out the day by going out to an Indian restaurant. Ngaire ate some rice and a ton of naan; Liam shoveled down some very hot curries and then fell asleep in his high chair (see above re: jet lag, also zoo outing).

Johannesburg is a very beautiful city. In some ways, it reminds me of San Diego, except for the fact that houses, shops, schools, etc., are all surrounded by high walls topped with razor wire and/or electric fencing. The corridor of the house we’re visiting is periodically divided by thick, lockable doors. My in-laws told us on our first night here that they would turn on the house alarm system when we went to bed, and if the alarm went off in the night, to lock ourselves in our rooms and wait for the security guard to arrive. So imagine the anxiety we should have felt when one of the cats set off the alarm around 1:30 this morning (we didn’t, because after hours of tossing and turning we had just fallen asleep and even hearing an alarm ringing aroused in me only the faintest feeling of curiosity, so it’s probably good it was just the cat).

Anyway, here we are. Tomorrow we head for the Drachensburg mountains for more R&R, plus hiking. More blog installments when I’m near more Internet access.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Sarah&hellip  | 

    I am glad that you guys had a good trip out there and that you are adjusting. It sounds like there are a lot of fun things to do. Will you be going out to where Chris’ parents live?

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