Sunday, January 8, 2012

Botswana - Taking It All In.

This is Part 2 of our trip to Botswana in December 2011. Part 1 is in the post before this.

It was fun to take it all in, truly fascinating and interesting....

A mud hut - apparently this type of roof is now expensive to make. Inside it is cool (cool, as in temperature. Well, cool as in awesome, too!) In the winter, around May - July, it is warm.

Wild flowers bloom nonchalantly here and there making a pretty picture in the midst of savannah scrub, Botswana's natural vegetation (geez, I'm beginning to sound like something on National Geographic).

Wha_?? Yes, THE Livingstone Memorial. Can you believe this? (However, I am not sure if this is the only memorial set up for Dr David Livingstone.)
"Britain wanted the body to give it a proper ceremony, but the tribe would not give his body to them. Finally they relented, but cut the heart out and put a note on the body that said, "You can have his body, but his heart belongs in Africa!"
We only passed by this spot but had we lingered here, I would have shed tears just at the thought of one person's sacrifice for a nation. And yes, we should take our hat off, Paul!

It seems like African guys usually have their hair cropped very short, while the ladies, even young girls, seem to place a lot of emphasis on their hair. In the town, you could find make-shift hairdressing spots with just chairs and tools set up under trees. There, several hairdressers will be busily braiding away!

Here's a family friend's young daughter who had hers done at home...this is art, I'm tellin' ya!

BFFs - my husband Paul, and Boago's father, Mr Matshuba - don't they look like brothers separated when young, discovering each other, and finally being reconciled across the continents! (I know, I have quite an imagination.) They are togged up like this for Christmas service in church. (Africans seem to dress up much more formally than we Malaysians do when attending church, and all the more at Christmas. So we followed suit. Geddit, geddit, followed suit? Sometimes I'm so funny I actually make myself laugh!)

We Malaysians are such a multi-racial bunch, our costumes are now such a (con-)fusion of everything. My daughter goes Chinese while I go Indian because we are both and neither at the same time.

The Matshubas. Esther (orange)is in a traditional African costume. I'm blinded by those flashin' teeth!

The stage backdrop of the church we attended (took about an hour to arrive in the town church) on Christmas day. These are pieces of cloth pulled taut and tied down.

Pizza joint in town for Christmas lunch!

Here are some other photos that I thought might interest you....

What did we eat in Botswana?

Look out for the next post!

If you have enjoyed this account of our trip, do write comments at the bottom of this blog post. I'd love to know what you think, and I do try to answer every one of them! (It takes me forever to upload photos/videos by the way.) Several of you have mentioned having problems getting your comments through, in which case, you can send me your comment through facebook or email and I will copy it here.
facebook: Valerene Matthews


  1. from facebook 9th January 2012

    Michelle Lee - Always enjoy reading your blog, keep them coming.

    Thanks, Michelle! so glad we're in touch again, across continents! And yes, it's a lot of work (especially the photo uploading - very slow!)but I am trying to keep it up.

  2. Wow! What a wonderful time you guys must have had in Africa! Loved the stories, loved the pictures..especially the one with the 'flashing teeth'... lol! It was a joy reading Part 1 & Part 2... hope there's more to come! Can't wait!

  3. Pattie Boo - thanks! I am still trying to sort out photos/videos but really regret not taking that many.

  4. Thanks for "taking me along your trip" with your wonderful narratives. I love the occasional funnies you stick in to humor us with your wit (but sometimes I think you did it to humor YOURSELF!!).

    Your holiday was truly homely. The type we don't get when we take one of the usual paid tours of a country. Your connection with the land & people must be priceless especially when you have a "family" there.

    Hey, enjoy your pics but NO pics of animals???? Which part of Africa are you in???

    When is part 3 coming?


  5. Ivan - of course I'm 'humouring myself', hahaahaha! Next post is about the food. Then maybe last one is about the animals (I have lousy photos because of lousy photographer, ie me).

  6. What's in the 'udder-like' contraption below the 'xylophone-thingy' in the 2nd last pic...and in the last pic, what kind of 'sound' was produced from the wooden contraption? Wish you had written something about them. Really enjoyed reading about your Botswana trip :)

  7. curious cat - We were in mad-hot sun at the time so I had hurriedly taken these photos without asking a whole lot of questions. I so regret that, though. And now you're making me feel like I owe it to my readers to find out. hahahaha! Also,I only took these pictures of instruments to show my musician son and didn't think I'd be putting them up. sorry!

  8. wow .. you really got an insight into botswana .. thanks for sharing your adventure here, can't wait to read about what they eat and i don't think you will stop at part 3 right? am sure you have loads more to share ...

  9. Huda - I didn't take enough photos! so I think after food post is reserves!!!

  10. from facebook, 10th Jan 2012:

    Allana Yap Chew Lan

    Oh I read your story! Great story! I so like how you met the son who adopted you and Paul.You are a generous, hospitable and loving couple. If I were younger I also want to adopt you all as my foster parents! :)

  11. Allana - you still can, you know! Where shall we go, child?

  12. xoxoxo,its maize meal not sorghum ok.
    when coming for my wedding its gonna be "the front side in Botswana"

  13. Finally, i have a chance to comment on ur fasinating blog on the Botswana trip. Really good job done pn the pictures and explanations. Keep up the effort!

  14. Finally, i have the chance to comment on your fasinating blog bout ur Botswana trip. Very good job done on the pictures and explanations. Is has given me some insight of the place. Keep up the effort!

    1. Thanks,Mei Kuen...I can understand your problem trying to post a comment...many of my friends have the same problem figuring it out, so I appreciate it.