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so 3

I’ve been working on a simple project here for a while. One of the 2 reasons I’ve been quiet.

Here’s the company name, after a sensible 30 seconds of sober thought in an office in downtown Maun. Not a booze/weed/can’t-remember-what-else induced catastrophe at 3 in the morning like the big ARC was years ago

I kindof like it. It’s deceptively innocent.

so

Q: What is this?

a) a dragonfly

b) the first step in catching up on blogs?

before Windhoek

Still more stray photo anecdotes

Here’s a western looking outdoor cafe in Windhoek (the capital city). It’s pretty much the only one. It’s surrounded by office buildings and wealthier civil servants and Chinese doing business here (there are many) hang out in the shade.┬áNamibia, being a little hostile to habitation only has 2.6 million people. So this is a busy place

I’ve done a couple of round trips to Windhoek, at 260 miles each way, for a few reasons. There’ll be a longer Windhoek post soon.

This is an interesting town on the way there. Rehoboth. Many of the houses are architectural and pristine. It turns out that the town is mostly coloured (mixed race) people, and they’re the planning and execution behind Namibia’s building trade, and the structures are their personal skills advertisement, each doing one thing or several very well

This mansion is a very dark grey/blue and the a/c just be going overtime. He’s not the services expert

Also on the way to Windhoek are baboons. Here the dominant male scouts the route ahead

He signals an all clear and a huge family follows

Also on the way are the first termite mounds we’ve seen here. Not as dense as amazing Australia, which is quite like Namibia in some ways. The biggest ones grow with tall scrubs. I’m not sure why. Maybe shade

Here’s another

*Note: I’ve just corrected a few post-post typos here. Please keep in mind that I like to post in the evening, with beer in hand. If I’m doing a long post or several, a few beers have gone down and the error catch rate goes to near zero. Although after 6 years I’m sure you’ve figured that out.

viper

On the road.

The strike is so powerful that most of its smaller prey die from impact, not venom. Responsible for more human deaths in Namibia than any of the other dozen or so poisonous snakes, including the legendary boomslang, and 2 cobras

Riders, please note track consistency, a sand/pebble mix. Often a sand/pebble/sharp rock mix.

Big post coming.

orange

Namibia, from the superb Sadalmelik at Wiki commons

The oasis in the middle of desert on the Orange river, near the end of its 2200K journey from Lesotho. It rains for 2 or 3 days a year here. Lodge on the left bank, below

Drifting, about a K downstream

A fossil (I think) on the bank

Learning to fish on a hand line with Loede. From GoPro. Insufficient wifi to upload

Ride report to follow in a week

western Cape

We’re about to enter a new country and regular posting will resume in a few days. My apologies for the holiday from it.

A couple of hundred miles north of Cape Town the flowering season is on

time, I guess, to get this started again

So where was I about 6 hours ago? Not at the destination I’m planning to go, but that’s a story for another day, soon. I’ll be there soon enough… I was here

This small bronze is remarkable in a lot of ways and by now I’ve seen about a billion. For a start, it’s immaculate, as are all the pieces here. Unlike northern India, the last path of Muslim destruction here was about AD 1200. Whereas the incredible museum at Sarnath, the site of Buddha’s first speech to his small band of disciples, not so far south of here, is a story book of repeated destruction over centuries, not one piece remains intact, including the most beautiful Buddha ever conceived in stone, the masterpiece of the sculpturally elite Gupta empire, yet 2 of the ruined objects are the origin of 2 of India’s important images, including their flag logo (the 24 spoked wheel), and another a currency logo (the 4 lions), salvaged from the scrap, and on display.

Don’t get me started.

This 6″ bronze above is quite recent, somewhere from the 18th to 19th century but is nonetheless a national treasure. It’s representative of keys elements of Tantric imagery. The characters are (unimportant to the story a bit) Chakrsamvara and Vajravarahi. The picture is lousy but she’s astride him facing him with her back to us. He represents wisdom, she compassion, and therefore together enlightenment. Further, this period of imagery took the license to increase traditional multi-limbed deities to an extreme, so many many arms, multiple heads. The idea here is that the enlightenment from the union of these two resulted in a unique idea, the merging of deities. This is kind of my maybe lousy summation, you have no idea how hard this stuff is to Google.

There are maybe 200 of these helpful pieces (if you’re Hindu curious) here.┬áIt’s in the excellent but small Patan museum, in the capital city here

So why am I here, for 4 days only, and why I am I not at my next destination. Good question.

and so…

After G went back, I dove into my new project. But I’ve barely left my hotel room.

I’m decamping from India, the rainy season is almost on us here, and moving to a new location. A secret, until I get there, about another 10 days, assuming no other complication arises.

My new destination, and the route, are planning intensive. I’m deep in shipping stuff, map data, rules and regulations, and applications. Plus there’ll be a big gear change.

I’m really looking forward to it.

I have a good idea about how I’ll return

The next 3 to 5 months here will be monsoon, and there’s another way to paint the big picture. But more than anything else, I want to really ride again, in a bigger way.

So, route drama ahead.