Day 298: Across Zimbabwe

Fri. 7th June 2013

Fortunately, this wasn't usToday we spent the whole day travelling by car and then by bus nearly 800km across Zimbabwe back to Victoria Falls. Janet says that I don’t need to put any more than this in the blog post (see here) … but that wouldn’t seem entirely right. We used the car journey to review our time in Zimbabwe, to start thinking about what to do in Tanzania at the end of our forthcoming Acacia trip – and to resolutely not think about what is waiting for us when we return home.

Duh!In truth, there is little to say about the trip back. The drive to Bulawayo was uneventful. We made it with the car unblemished (though there was a bit of a scare as we were parking right at the end) and in time for a coffee and a bite of lunch. Lovemore (yes, really) from Europcar met us at the Pathfinder office more or less on time and the bus left more or less on time. And so at around 7:15pm, 11 hours after we left Great Zimbabwe we are back in Vic Falls back where our adventure in Zimbabwe started some twelve days ago.

Bedlam at the bus stationAs we’ve described before our choices are essentially either cheap and basic or expensive and luxury. In the end we plumped to stay at The Kingdom hotel at the expensive end and justified it because it is where the bus finishes and it is the closest hotel  to the border where we are heading in a couple of days. We were also able to cash in our reward night at hotels.com, which one of the sites we’ve been using for hotel booking on our trip and get the cost down.

Pretentious, moi?So, we can justify staying here. Whether it was wise or not is something else again. We’ve gone from faux-castle in Bulawayo to faux-indigenous here – but with the addition of a casino (which always seemed to be empty). It is plastic, synthetic and joyless. It is like Las Vegas but without the atmosphere, the people or the fun. Even the staff seem to be just going through the motions. At least Elephant Hills was less pretentious and less artificial – and the staff there would smile and talk to you.

Echoes of Great ZimbabweUnlike with the giant statues at the entrance to the casino, we do at least know the symbolism behind the bird statues that feature prominently around the eaves of the hotel – it is copied from the Zimbabwe flag and the stone chevrons that the bird is perched on come from the walls and buildings in Great Zimbabwe.

 

 

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One Response to Day 298: Across Zimbabwe

  1. Sara Mayes (Churchman) says:

    Bit late in your trip but my travel mag is telling me that there is an Ekahau HeatMapper app (ekahau.com) which will find wifi sweet spots in your hotel or NetStumbler (netstumbler.com) which will find hidden and possibly stronger signals. It also says move away from mirrors as that can dim the signal. Personally, I find mirrors dim the view, they keep showing my reflection as that of an aging woman…….!

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