Namibia - Land of the Brave

2:45 pm

Greetings from a very hot Africa…

Namibia is a desert situated between the Namib Desert and the Kalahari Desert. Namibia gained independence from South Africa in March 1990 after the Namibian War of independence.
Namibia shares land boarders with South Africa, Botswana, Zambia and Angola.

I have been in Namibia for a week and when I arrived from South Africa, I had no expectations. I just overjoyed when the kind gentleman at customs handed me my stamped passport and with a dashing smile turned to me and said “Welcome to Namibia.”
I had never entered another country using public transport so this was an experience. On the South African side, it took about 20 minutes for all the passengers on our bus to get stamped out of the country. Then we all had to remove our luggage from the bus so that it can be individually checked by the South African Police Service officials.
That took just over an hour. Then it was discovered that some of the gentlemen on the bus with us had bought goods in South Africa which they didn’t declare and that delayed us further as they had to get fined. That delayed us by a further hour. Getting stamped in to Namibia was also a breeze. Then another hour to deal with the undeclared goods. Altogether we spent 4 fours at the border.
The distance between the South African border gate and the Namibian border gate is 6 kilometres. At some point I was wondering if we will ever get to the Namibian gate to get stamped into the country. That’s 6 kilometres of No-Mans-Land. Usually the gates are a few hundred metres from each other, more of a walking distance.

I have been in Namibia for a week and have spent my week in the Capital city, Windhoek. I have spent my week mostly with the locals. It is amazing how quick you make friends when traveling solo and there is a bar or a swimming pool nearby.
Because I am more interested in experiencing Namibia as a local and not a tourist, I have not had much interest in discovering the tourist attractions (I will explain the reason for this in the next blogpost) I have spent my week tasting the Namibian beer and I am not much of a beer drinker so I have stuck to drinking what I know. I have also explored the nightlife and discovering the township.

Windhoek as a city is not that different from a South African city. It cannot be compared to Johannesburg though. It is more similar to Nelspruit in my books. Everything looks like home, from department stores, furniture stores, petrol stations and franchise restaurants.

I have made friends in Windhoek from Namibia, Tanzania as well as Angola. With every day that passes with me spending time out of South Africa, I wish  I could unread all the negative junk I have ever read about Africans and the rest of Africa outside South Africa. The people in Namibia a beautiful, they have welcomed me to their homes and their lives. I have made some friendships and also became part of some families.

Tomorrow, let’s talk about traveling Namibia. And my experience.


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