Friday, 11 January 2013

Summer roadtrip - Joburg to Bulawayo

The hubs and I put a lot of thought into this next leg. We had a choice of travelling 850km and one boarder (South Africa/Zimbabwe) or 940km and two borders (South Africa/Botswana and Botswana/Zimbabwe).. Would seem like a no brainer, but because that was on the last Friday before Christmas, a lot of Zimbabweans working in SA would be headed home to spend the festives with family, making the already busy SA/Zim border and NIGHTMARE!

Queues of up to 10km long ({source}


After a lot of phone calls to friends and family who all said that if we took the one border route, we would be in the queue for nothing less than 24 hours, two borders it was going to be. And so at 4am (in the hopes of being in Bulawayo by 4pm) our journey began. Woop woop.

The South Africa/Botswana border sucked. We were there for 2hours and it was crazy hot (felt like 40 degrees Celsius) and by the time we left, we were already tired, but we still had another 590km and one more border. We were, however, VERY optimistic that the next one would be a breeze. Boy were we wrong. We arrived at 5pm and the man-queue (there wasn't a vehicle one, thank heavens), was about just over a km long and it didn't look good at all. We asked around and discovered that we were likely going to get through at 10am the next day. Now let me explain, we had my cousin, sister in law and her fiance who had flown for almost 24hrs, slept 3hrs the night before, in the car, to come and celebrate our marriage with my family back home. I felt like crap and all I wanted to do was sit in some dark corner and bawl my eyes out. I left everyone in the car and joined the queue. After moving 1,5meters in 3hours, I was ready to do anything to get to the front. Apparently, so was Hubs because he came to the line and asked me to go take a look at something in the car. Can't get into details, but we had found a way to get to the front of the queue (at a price) and at 10pm, with a bit of drama in between (me losing my passport, someone being stabbed), we were done, and the relief that washed over me was nothing short of amazing.

As I put my head on the pillow I lay on for the most part of my childhood and adolescent years, with my Husband next to me, I said a little prayer of gratitude, because I had missed Zim, and was soooo happy to be back.

10 comments:

  1. Away...you handled it well though. I would have actually cried. I don't do well with stressful trips.

    Kudos to your hubby for helping you get through it.

    Welcome back!

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    1. Thank you. I desperatley wanted to cry, but that would have made an already bad situation worse :(

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  2. wow, this is exciting. it reads like a book or a film. the first thing that came to mind was Yvonne Vera's famous book. I remember the scene of the people get back to bulawayo for the festivities od the weekend and the long queue to get home. And then the whole secretive way to leap to the front is even more like an intriguing film. I felt like i was in the backseat with you all.

    great recap.

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    1. Means alot, especially coming from a writer like yourself. Thank you :)

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  3. Wow. Sounds like quite the adventure. I'm glad the end result was you and hubs getting to your hometown safely!

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    1. I was quite the experience, don't even wnat to think about what might have been had hubs not made a plan :)

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  4. Wow! What an adventure! You write so well! Almost seems like a book :).

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    1. Thank you. It was definitely an experience to remember :)

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  5. Yeah this made me go TIA (This is Africa from the movie blood diamond). What an adventure. I am glad all was well in the end.

    You know going to Victoria Falls one day is super high on my list of places to visit.

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    1. You should, and I hope my next post convinces you :).

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