South Africa

US Wealth Napolitano |

A little over a week ago, I sat in disbelief as a Cheetah was crossed the road within 5 feet of me.  This wasn’t the Bronx or San Diego Zoo, this was Zulu Nyala, a private game reserve in Hluhluwe, South Africa.  (Pronounced SLOO SLOO WE) A trip like this wasn’t even on our bucket list, but thanks to the Braintree Rotary Club we saw everything except for the Lion and the elusive Leopard.

A financial advisor here at USWM, Teri Nicklas was the president of The Braintree Rotary Club.  As a loyal supporter of Teri’s community involvement, I bid for the African Safari at their annual golf outing and soon found myself booking a 17 hour flight across the Atlantic. All in, flying back from South Africa took three flights. The first one was 2 hours. Next was Johannesburg to Atlanta at nearly 17 hours (not in business class!), with the final leg from Atlanta to Boston.

While at the Game Lodge, we were served three excellent meals per day, with some even reaching my definition of funky… in a good way.  I am prone to try just about anything disguised as a culinary treat.  The springbok, crocodile, warthog, ostrich, beef and all the fixings were a treat for the adventurous eater.

Accommodations had us staying the first two nights in fancy tents. There were two cement walls, two canvas walls and a canvas roof with a really nice bathroom.  They suggested we keep our eyes open for snakes, and to call them if we spotted one in the tent. Fortunately, we were not in need of their snake removal services. The last three nights on the reserve found us in the honey moon suite!  Maybe they knew that our 30th wedding anniversary is right around the corner (5/26… but who’s counting).

The good news is that my wife Joan is still talking to me.  After 17 days in a row together, with some new friends and a lot of alone time, she still shows up to the office with a smile and greets me at home as if I were arduously travelling to get there.

Below are a few photos of the safari portion of this fantastic trip. If you want to see some cool videos taken with my I Phone, including the brush with a Cheetah, go to my face book page and check it out. I could use a few more friends.  Stay tuned, next time we’ll fill you in on Cape Town and the Cape of Good Hope.