Tuesday, January 11, 2011


On Sunday, I should have been blogging, but I wasn't. I was "otherwise engaged". More specifically, Dwight and I were at the Mozambique/South Africa border post lined up for 6 hours along with a throng of thousands of others also trying to get across.

Line-ups that barely inch forward are bad enough, but they're worse when the line up is outside and the rain-heavy-heavens decide they can't possibly hold their gazillions of litres of water a moment longer and to the sound and light show of flashes of lightning and claps of thunder, they send their contents downward in torrents on us, the helpless.

As luck would have it, we'd forgotten to bring an umbrella. You can't very well stand in line while remaining seated in the dry comfort of your car, so out we paid our dues out in the rain along with many others who had no option. At least we had a folding windshield sun visor (the big foil kind) plus a foil thermo blanket which I stole from the Cessna's emergency pack. These served as our umbrellas...more or less.

Me under the foil sheet.

Generally speaking, everyone was more than patient with the whole process. But there were a few who got rowdy (I think they'd had a bit too much holiday cheer) and started demanding their "right" to cut in ahead of the rest. A border policeman maintained order with a sjambock (like a whip, but shorter and thicker). I was thankful for that because no one wanted to quarrel with a policeman and his sjambock!

We finally cleared the border, rather wet and weary, after 11 p.m. We were very thankful we had a hot shower and bed waiting for us at Mercy Air.

Next Sunday should be better :)


Anonymous said...

NOW I get the whip thing! Man what a life! (Give me -40C rather than rain and whips anyday!)

Russell said...

Hah hah, good old Africa