Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls
We set out at 4am. Because the night before had been really busy, I slept most of the way. 6 hours later, we were in Livingstone: 4 Nigerians, a Brazilian and 2 Zambians. 

We got the Zambians to buy the tickets, cunny man die, cunny man bury am (Foreigners pay 100 Kwacha while locals pay 7 Kwacha. See pasharity?) and just in case we ran into trouble at the reception, I told Evelyn, our Brazilian colleague, to tell them her dad was a Zambian apple farmer from Lusaka, God forgive me. 


We came to see Victoria Falls, one of the 7 natural wonders of the world. To see it, we had to get raincoats and rubber shoes to keep our bodies dry and our feet sure on the slippery ground. The mist from the ‘fall’ formed a never-ending rain that kept most of the pathway to and from the falls wet. It was shortly before this that our driver nicely mentioned that we would need to wear shorts to avoid getting wet. My colleague asked what we were supposed to do with the information seeing that it came 6 hours late. Sadly, his sarcasm was lost on the driver. The unlucky ones had to roll up their jeans. 


Bros Livingstone
They told me Sir Livingstone discovered Victoria Falls and I thought, really? So what about all the people who were living in the area centuries before he got there? I was also told he named it after Queen Victoria hence the name Victoria Falls. Thankfully, the locals call it Mosi-oa-Tunya’ – ‘The Smoke that Thunders’. True to its name, you hear the falls before you see it, like a tanker of water being poured down a ten story building; unnerving but exciting :)




We set out and shortly after caught our first glimpse. I must have said wow like a hundred times. There was something magical about the creamy water that stretched for what I later found out to be 1.7 kilometres. Shame I couldn’t record much because my camera wasn’t waterproof. 

I couldn’t stand still when I saw rainbows. They were everywhere; surreal and calming. After getting sufficiently wet, our guide told us we still had one more stop before heading back; the boiling pot. He said it was going to be a 2 kilometre walk downhill and advised us to buy water because we were going to need it. We were also advised not to carry food or bags- the baboons were aggressive and unafraid and will wrestle our bags away if they thought there was something to eat in it. I gave him my backpack to carry and walked a safe distance away. 

The road stretched endlessly and the baboons jumped from tree to tree or picked lice off their backs in the middle of the road while we waited for them to finish, stopping once in a while to throw a nonchalant glance our way.


 When we got to the boiling pot, the only thing that stopped me from sitting on the ground were the jagged stones and perpetual wetness everywhere until it hit me… the river. It looked like there was a giant cooking spoon stirring it from underneath and the mist from Victoria Falls gave the entire place an eerie feel. 

Straddling the river was the famous Victoria Falls Bridge linking Zimbabwe and Zambia. I remember looking around and feeling awed and small and insignificant.

 The trip back felt like climbing a vertical wall. I stopped to catch my breathe after every 10 steps or so. When I eventually found a bench halfway up, a baboon was sitting on it. 

We all got to the hilltop eventually. Though my thighs throbbed and I felt tired and hungry, I was happy I went and knew the memory would stay with me for a long time.

©Naomi Lucas

16 comments:

Ifesinachi Okoli-Okpagu said...

I wish I was there!

Ifesinachi Okoli-Okpagu said...

I wish I was there!

Anonymous said...

You had this mischievous look on your face in the pix of you in the raincoat and I couldnt help laughing at your statement of climbing back up and finding a bench with a baboon already sitting there, LOL. I am sure you had some words for the Baboon. I love reading your blogs and I miss u
Seun

Abisagbo Segun said...

wow. i wanna go too.

sharp naija babe...7 instead of 100

rex emma said...

Every such experience is a life long memory.

rex emma said...

Health-FULL climbing Naomi. Every such experience is a life-long memory.

Naomi Lucas said...

Aw...Ifesinachi you should schedule a trip. It's awesome.

Naomi Lucas said...

Aw..Seun, miss you too dearie. I had nothing to say to the baboon o; me that was peaking from behind the tour guide?

Naomi Lucas said...

@Segun, you should. Visa process is kinda cumbersome sha, except if you leave in abj :)

Naomi Lucas said...

@Segun, we were saving our money for shopping, not sightseeing, lol

Naomi Lucas said...

@Rex, health-full ke? All my organs were fine before the trip ke? lol

Elizabeth Ofuani said...

lovely Naomi...all i want now is to visit victoria fall...

Naomi Lucas said...

Thanks Elizabeth, you should, really :)

Anonymous said...

Aww I had to read over $ over. Sounds real fun $ interesting.

Anonymous said...

Wow! The beauty of nature. Nice one babes. U'll make a good ambassador of d tourist site with dis piece. Victoria falls on my list. *bigsmile*

Brandy

Naomi Lucas said...

Thanks brandy :)