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Venturesome Overland

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Greetings from the Kalahari. #totothelandrover #kalahari #centralkalaharigamereserve #botswana #botswanaisbest #landrover #defender110 #landroverlife #onelifeliveit #overland #overlandafrica #africaoverland #womenoverlandingtheworld #alloyandgrit #landroverphotoalbum #defenderdisciples #venturesomemore
This is Botswana. Steve and two complete strangers fixing Toto, who had two rear bushings improperly installed, resulting in the entire back axle shifting forward. We started two years ago with the kindness of strangers and we end that way. This is typical of the kindness and character of Batswana. Not only are they helping fix the truck, they said “my home is your home.” #botswana #botswanaisbest #payitforward #totothelandrover #kindnessofstrangers #overland #overlandafrica #africaoverland #botho #roadsidemechanic #landroverlife #landroverdefender #defender110 #onelifeliveit
After two weeks in the shop, major parts replacements, and more money than we should have spent, we spent our 18th anniversary swapping the brake pads that were improperly installed and trying to fix the bushings that were brand new as of yesterday. Posted up at SOS Children’s Village thanks to the kindness of a Motswana who spent his ENTIRE afternoon under the truck with Steve. Tomorrow, we start over. #happyanniversary #kindnessofstrangers #rollwiththepunches #landrover #defender110 #africaoverland #overlandafrica #overland #torothelandrover
We left Gabs this morning. Our farewell tour of Botswana begins as do many of our trips these days - with Toto on the side of the road and Steve with a wrench and manual. #landroverlife #cliche #landrover #defender110 #roadsiderepair #noreallyitsfine #readthemanual #overland #overlandafrica #africaoverland #totothelandrover

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Let me start by saying that I do not like these guys. At all. They’re ugly and scary and huge. The first time I saw one in Mokolodi, just after getting here, my brain was still in Montana mode and I thought I was looking at a black bear. I don’t like monkeys, but I’d take them any day over a baboon.

There is a large troop just south of town and we saw them often on our travels. They cause a lot of problems at campsites, where they can steal food from inside trucks and wreak havoc on ablution blocks. They can also be aggressive. A small boy in Botswana was hospitalized a while back because he was bit by one when he wouldn’t give them his lunch on his way to school. A former Fulbrighter I know, in Namibia, watched one walk into his house, open the fridge, take out a banana, peel and eat it, leave the peel on the counter, and walk out. He started keeping an ax handle around to threaten them with. 

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Everyone loves a Land Rover.

Baboons are described as “very large monkeys with long, equally developed limbs” who forage during the day and rest on cliffs or trees at night. Audubon calls them “dog-headed” with close set eyes under prominent brows.

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In Botswana we see the Chacma baboon, the largest of the five baboon species. They live in troops of seven to 200, which are aggregations of smaller family groups. High-ranking males mate first, but lower-ranking males can secure mates by aligning themselves with female groups and protecting them and their young. Audubon says that females often prefer these “friends” as mates. 

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Our friend Dina from Road Beneath Our Feet loves them, pointing out that no one pays attention to them so they can move and be in freedom. She has a point. But I still don’t like them.

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