Sunday, October 14, 2012

Change of Season

As the weather here on the East Coast of the United States turns cooler, I am reminded that the weather in Africa is growing warmer. My friends in Southern Africa are experiencing the rejuvenating effects of spring.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Latest Africa Video

My summer trip to Africa was a wonderful experience as always. You can experience a taste of it by watching my video Cape Town to Vic Falls to Jo'burg. The video now appears on the Drifters Adventure Travel web site:
You can also view the two commercial clips we did:
Penthouse at Cape Town Inn
Drifters Desert Lodge

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Athol Fugard's Coming Home

I just came back from seeing Coming Home, an Athol Fugard play, at the Wilma Theatre in Philly. It was written by a South African and set in the Karoo. I practically ran to the theatre to see it, and it brought me to tears. It's now the fourth Fugard production I've seen. What a writer!

The storyline raises many disturbing issues though. South Africa still faces many problems including a lack of opportunity for the predominantly poor black population and the continual rise of AIDs cases. It's important for me and others to realize that Africa is a land of beauty and despair and one must be fully aware of each spectrum.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Cape Town to Jo'burg--Ten Years Later

I am officially Africa-bound again. My boyfriend and I will be doing another promotional video for Drifters Tours. Ironically, I will be doing the same trip I did ten years ago. (See the photo of me at Fish River Canyon in Namibia.) We will fly into Cape Town, see a few friends and then make our way northward. We will travel through the Stellenbosch wine country in South Africa, then canoe on the Orange River in Namibia and hike around the rim of Fish River Canyon. On the coast we will be able to partake in some adventure activities such as quadding and sandboarding on the dunes before making our way to Etosha Game Park in the north. Once we cross into Botswana, we will visit the Okavango Delta. We’ll travel by mekoro, a dugout canoe, through the remote wilderness areas before making our way to Victoria Falls, the Adventure Capital of Africa. I’ve already white water rafted, taken a walk with lions, and ridden on an elephant. I’m looking forward to trying one of the new activities the town always seems to offer. We also get to experience some more game-viewing in Zimbabwe at Hwange before we make our way back to Johannesburg to catch up with some more friends before our flight home.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

My Mercedes is Not For Sale

I just finished reading My Mercedes is Not for Sale: : From Amsterdam to Auto-Misadventure Across the Sahara by Jeroen van Bergeijk, a personal narrative about a Dutch man who travels from Amsterdam through West Africa to sell his Mercedes. The book offers a great insight into the economy of those countries as well as the reality of traveling through the Sahara. While I was reading the book in the sauna at my gym, a young Moroccan noticed me looking at the map on the inside cover. He pointed to a small town on the coast and said, “I’m from there.” What a small world. Although I have visited Tangier, I have yet to make my way into West Africa and look forward to doing so someday soon. Unfortunately, no overland tours run during our summer, which is their rainy season. A preview of the book is available on

Monday, April 20, 2009

The Number #1 Ladies Detective Agency

My friend who was working as a safari guide in Botswana suggested that I read one of the novel’s from Alexander McCall Smith’s #1 Ladies Detective Agency series. Although I was excited about reading a book set in Botswana, I must admit that the storyline did not interest me and I didn’t get further than the first chapter. Recently, I learned that the BBC was broadcasting a series based on the books so I decided to give it another try and was pleasantly surprised. I immediately bonded with the lead female character, Mma Ramotswe, who is positive and independent. I also love Mma Makutsi, her overachieving secretary. The series was filmed in Botswana and offers a great deal of insight into the traditional beliefs. So far, I have watched the two-hour pilot and three of the 60 minutes episodes and am hooked. For more information about the series, you can visit their official website:

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Walk to School

Lateness to school is a big problem in the South Jersey high school where I work. I don’t have a great deal of empathy for these students. Most of them stay up late on the computer or play video games, so they don't get up in time to catch the bus or their ride to school. I can’t imagine how they would contend with having to get to school if they had to walk—sometimes 5 kilometers—as they do in many areas of Africa. I found a great video documenting a walk to an African school: I particularly liked the one excuse the Masaai student offered for being late: “I ran into an elephant.” My students couldn't top that.