How fast can this F****** car drive in reverse?
Shingwedzi Travel Blog› entry 6 of 7 › view all entries
I get out of my home for the last couple of days in Shingwedzi to go and explore the more southerly parts of the park. But I want to go a couple of small roads in the north first because they apparently should have a lot of wildlife. The day starts with the usual impalas but there is not much else.
So I am not too impressed by the wildlife. But in a little while a group of giraffes show up those tall animals is always nice to watch for a while so I stop and observe while the giraffes take a few bite of the top of the trees.
And right there on the road about 30-
I don't like the elephants gesturing - it doesn't look like a friendly elephant - it looks more like an elephant which think I am too close.
I sort of realize there is something missing in my general driving skills. I live in the city and have never owned a car - hence driving is not something I do on a regular basis only when I rent a car to go on some sort of extended trip. And for some reason the ability to drive a car at high speed in reverse on a dirt road while being chased by wild animals is not part of the curriculum you have to go through to get a drivers license in
Hence my general abilities in backing a car is somewhat limited - it is generally something I do when I need to get in or out of a parking space - and doing that is at a slow pace below walking speed of course.
I go down the road at high speed fortunately the road is pretty straight so I don't have to navigate some sharp corners in the process. I go on for what seems a long time and then I take a quick glance to see if the elephant is still chasing me. The elephant is still there - and it does not seem ready to slow down - it keeps going at a remarkable speed. Hence I keep going down the road up a hill - down a hill - and up another hill. By the way I send my apologies to all my TB friends - I forgot to take photos of this incidence - I know I should have - after all I was only having my right hand on the steering wheel while my left where relaxing on the passenger seat of the car. Hence I could easily have been taking lots of photos with the left hand.
I continue my reversing up one more hill - and then I take another look to see if the elephant is still there.
I figure the best way to proceed is to turn the car and back up the hill and take a look around and figure out what the situation is like on the other side of the hill. I guess with the car turned that way it should be fairly easy to out run an elephant - just in case. I go up the hill and yeah there is an elephant - a huge bull elephant right at the side of the road chewing on a tree. Probably not a good idea to go that way. I wait a little bit debating the situation. Then the elephant seems to take a few steps away from the road and out to the side of the road - situation is improving but not quite stable. A car comes by with a couple of South Africans in it - I figure I should tell them about the situation so they don't go down the road and start taking pictures.
They decide to proceed and they drive slowly by the elephant. I figure that went well. But I still hesitate a bit about going - then the elephant takes a few more steps further away from the road and it is chewing on a new tree. I turn the car around and start going down the road - just as I am right in front of the elephant it stops chewing on its tree and stars at me. I figure this is a good time to speed up and drive away and I get away pretty quickly.
I drive down the road and there is no more animals chasing me for the moment. Then I run into some more elephants. A nice big herd of females with their young ones are standing on both sides of the road - and on the middle of the road. They are quite friendly - though I might have developed some sort of elephant phobia by now because I am looking for escape routes - just in case. In the end I don't need an escape route and after a while the elephants clear the road and I drive on.
I get back to the main road in Kruger and drive down it for a little while - and I guess this is the big morning of elephants - because next to the road is three big bull elephants drinking from a big tank.