Sturday, October 20 -- This morning, 5 of us went on an elephant back safari. Augie and I rode the largest of the bunch, Miss Ellie, with Norman as our driver. It's not like the Asian elephants, where you sit on a basket. The elephant has a soft saddle. We rode for an hour, then we spent some time feeding our elephants and thanking them for the ride. Then we were treated to breakfast and taken to a large shopping area in the town of Victoria Falls where Rhonda bought 3 huge giraffes and Augie and I bought a large carving of elephants. We took all our treasures to the DHL office for shipping.
We went back to our hotel to shower (didn't want the others to smell elephant all the way to our next destination), pack and head off to Namibia.
Our next experience is the Impalila Lodge, situated on the Zambezi River. The entire trip was by boat. This was the first of our first rustic, bush experiences. The lodge is near where the Chobe and Zambezi Rivers meet, on a strip of land which runs along the border of Botswana but belongs to Namibia. We were at the point where Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Namibia all meet.
Our private chalets were elevated above a lush forest, but it was back to air cooling, generator power, and mosquito nets. They do a good job, though, of making sure there is plenty of hot water available all day. Rhonda and Brian stayed home once when everyone else went off for a cruise, that they turn off the electricity when all the guests are gone. They also shut if off in the middle of the night.
Shortly after our arrival, we were taken on a sunset cruise. This was so much nicer than our boat cruise at Chobe, because we had our own private boat. We saw lots of crocs and hippos, and a gorgeous sunset.