Windhoek was exactly what I had hoped, a good place to find some traveling companions to share costs, and I was luck to meet up with Steven Houben from Belgium and Jenaya Keech from Australia. Steven had built up considerable vacation time over the past year and is on a 6 week holiday from his job. Jenaya has been travelling on and off for 12 years and is calling it good in December after 6 months in Uganda, Rwanda, Zambia, and finally Namibia.
It took a little while to finally get our food and supplies to head out. I was trying to track down some white gas for my campstove and thought I had it in the grocery store when I bought some "cleaning benzene." When I brought it into the camping store to ask the opinion of the clerk there, he pointed out the prominent note on the label "INFLAMMABLE." I exchanged it for some fruit (I had lost the receipt and had to make an even exchange)and put off the search as there was a BBQ or "Braai" pit right in the camp site and we could buy bundles of firewood there.
We caravaned up from Windhoek (Steven had his own car) and set up camp at the park resort, Okakuejo (O-ka-koo-yo) inside the Southwest entrance to Etosha National Park. Etosha is known for it's huge "pan" - basically a large salt covered depression that seems to strech forever. It's one of the larger game parks in Africa, but usually, they great variety of game gathers around a few central watering holes in the dry season. Since the rains have just begun falling, we ahd to drive around a good bit and look since the wildlife doesn't concentrate around the watering holes as it does in the dry season.
We were lucky enough to catch a leopard crossing the road our first afternoon, some beautful zebra herds, three jackals vying for a potential meal down a burrow, a yellow chameleon crossing the road, and every night 3 to five rhinos would come to the camp watering hole from about 8 - 10 pm.
We did see some lions, but at a distance. They were resting in the shade under a tree. The temps were quite warm - 90+ and very sunny. Unfortunately for Jenaya, we couldn't get a good photo. In all here time in Africa she has yet to gete good photo of a lion, and this was here second trip to Etosha having stopped on her way in from Zambia. With just about a month to go, she's still holding out hope.
Oddly enough, we didn't see any elephants either. We saw plenty of scat,, but no actual elephants. I'm sure I'll see some in South Africa, so Oscar, have no fear!