Safari Time!
Hi everyone! This week, I’m checking in from Johannesburg, South Africa! We just arrived here yesterday afternoon after a full 24 hours of travel. This past week has been full of preparation for the upcoming safari with Journeys Unforgettable.

As of the last post here, we were in Kingman, AZ en route to Las Vegas. We arrived in Vegas the next day and parked at the home of our great friends Steve and Beverly. After being in small towns with limited resources/cell signals for a while, it was refreshing to get back to a big city. We had a lot of prepping to do for Africa, and we didn’t waste any time.

First of all, we had to secure our gear rentals for the trip. I rented a 500 mm lens as well as a second camera body. If you ever need to rent gear, LensPro To Go is excellent. We also had some last-minute shopping to do, so a trip to REI was in order! Some of the less-exciting prep stuff included flu shots (recommended by our travel doctor), backing up hard drives and clearing memory cards, and some strategic packing. And of course, we had lots of last-minute work to get done.

So here we are, in South Africa, about to embark on an incredible safari to Zimbabwe and Botswana. You can see our itinerary above. I also wanted to give a heads up that there will be no blog post next week. As soon as we leave Johannesburg, we will be completely off the grid until Nov. 14th. Stay tuned then for some amazing photos!

Some of the gang hanging out by an impromptu camfire in Las Vegas.

A convergence of friends
Before we left for our trip, and in-between all the preparations, we were so lucky this week to be able to meet up with lots of great friends. I mentioned Steve and Beverly above. Those guys are so great for letting us be their “neighbors” whenever we’re in town. The day after we rolled into town, we learned that our friend Lisa, who we visited in Lake Havasu, just happened to be spending the night in Vegas, so we got to meet up for dinner. Thanks to Yelp, we found a new favorite restaurant called Pan Asian. It’s totally casual/no frills, byob, and the food is AMAZING. We actually went two nights in a row and will most likely be making another visit on our return trip to Vegas.

The morning before we flew out, our great friend Cherie, of Technomadia, flew in as well! Her and Chris actually bought our Mini Cooper (it matches their bus perfectly and we will be getting a new Mini when we return to the states) and came to pick it up. She is now embarking on a solo cross-country road trip with the Mini back to where they are parked in St. Louis.

If all that wasn’t enough, it gets better! The night before we left, Steve and Beverly hosted an awesome dinner at their place. It was us, Cherie, and my friend Steve (a different Steve!) who is also a Vegas local. When we finished eating – and this is not a joke – our friends and fellow full-time RVers Sam and Tracy pulled up in their rig and joined us for drinks! These guys, along with Cherie and Chris, were also our camp-mates at Burning Man. We got a campfire going in the backyard and got to spend an excellent night with six of our friends before making our long journey to the other side of the world. You know… life is good.