A South African Safari
A gift of love from big sis on the occasion of our engagement
Hello Bona Bona Game Lodge!
Some time ago hubby dearest decided to ask his uncles to visit my home in East London to state his intention to spend the rest of his life with me. What an amazing day that was, filled with anxiety, joy and a copious amount of champagne – but more about that story later! This is a blog about how my beloved sister got us a two-night stay at Bona Bona Game Lodge in North West Province as a gift for us to celebrate our engagement. I honestly don’t know how people make it through life without big sisters. She definitely got the sister-of-the-year award for this gift.
Anyway, so off we went on our two-night break excited about the prospect of time out in the bush to reflect on the journey we were about to embark on.
The drive down the N12 took longer than we expected. We were on the road for nearly 4 hours driving from Johannesburg but on arrival we realised that it was all worth it. Driving along the dirt road to the lodge was a bit bumpy but seamless enough – maybe due to the anticipation. On arrival our check-in was fine and quick enough and we were immediately taken to our room, which was near the restaurant. This was convenient but did result in a bit of noise from passing and dining guests. Our room was large and comfortable. We were glad that we went in Summer because the room had no ceiling, just a thatched roof, which I imagine might result in a cold room during the winter months.
We had a full first day given that we had made sure to arrive early and decided that we’d use our time well to be among the animals. The initial plan had been to only go on the game drive on day 2 but we figured why not do two drives at different times for the full experience? Fortunately, we could be accommodated for the extra drive at short notice. Kudos to the Bona Bona team!
Our Game Ranger was arguably one of the most knowledgeable people on wildlife I’ve ever come across. He regaled us with his knowledge and experience of South African wildlife sharing details on animal habits, behaviours and the like. I think at some point we stopped even watching out for the animals to listen to his many stories. We absolutely appreciated the hours spent in the wild on both days and left with a great deal of newly gained knowledge on the importance of wildlife preservation. Because we went at different times, we got to experience so many different realities of life in the wild – how the animals roamed around, when they were hunting for food, when they rested and played. Really just a magical experience.
This experience gave us time to reflect on just how small we are as humans in the greater scheme of things and just how much bigger the world out there is. Back at the lodge we enjoyed our meals at the Jakkals Restaurant and probably drank much more wine and beer than our bodies could take. But if that’s not part of the experience I don’t know what is! We left after two nights feeling half refreshed, half still tired from the boozy behaviour but eternally grateful for the gift of being able to spend time out reflecting and at total peace with the world.