By Alexander Longwell:
The last few weeks of March has seen us wrap up the first leg of visits with the 9 schools for the Taiwan Games. I am very happy to have been able to join the OAC outreach team in visiting these places. These visits have been the best part of working down here, traveling throughout Swaziland, teaching young children the values of sport and healthy lifestyle, and creating amazing memories that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. The visits will stop for me on March 29th however they will continue for everyone else on May 24th when the second leg of visits begin.
Friday’s visit to Nokuthula (pronounced noktula) was yet another fun day, however early in the morning I walked full speed into an open window (windows open horizontally by rotating at the centre point) while demonstrating frontball to a group of children. I thought nothing of it at the time as I am used to bumping my head on things however I noticed a bit of blood when I felt the area I hit. I got some gauze to stop the bleeding but it wasn’t so bad to warrant leaving the school early. We finished the day and when we returned Carmen took me to the clinic to get checked up. The Doctors took a look and all was fine, luckily I had my hat on at the time which I think saved me from needing stitches. Although now I have a nice bald spot on the side of my head.
Saturday I finally managed to get out to one of the many game reserves Swaziland has to offer. Many thanks to Mrs. H who helped secure my transportation, without her help I fear I would have spent another weekend sleeping in. The park we visited was Hlane, which is about an hour and a half drive from Mbabane. Dalton, Bandile and I arrived around 12:30pm for the afternoon game drive. The start of the safari was quiet, didn’t see much for the first half-hour, then we saw a group of elephants off in the distance, but they were too far to get any good pictures. That was followed up by a couple rhinos and later we finally found the lions.
Towards the end we found more elephants and I was able to get some good pictures. One was blocking the path ahead of us, staring us down. Our driver quickly put the jeep in reversed and backed out of there to avoid having it charge us. When we returned to the main reception area we got a fire going and prepared brai, the Swazi equivalent to a barbecue. We cooked plenty of meat, enjoyed the company of some others who were there celebrating a birthday and later departed after an amazing day.
Until next time,