A Travellerspoint blog

Family time!

sunny 93 °F

Seth ended up having a rough travel back home. His first plane arrived late to Kenya so he missed the flight to New York. He had to stay overnight and be stuck in a Kenya Hotel for almost 24 hours (apparently he was in a rough place and they didn't want him to leave). He finally made it home today! Kenzie had a rough time knowing her dad was leaving, she cried for a good hour but we are on night #3 and she's been fine!

Friday we visited my Grandmother's old house. My uncle his wife and kids now love in this house. It's very sad with the drought and power cuts it makes it near impossible for him to keep the place looking it's best. I was still amazed on how beautiful the property was, they hold weddings on the property because it's one of the more attractive looking places in Harare. We got to meet my cousins for the first time they were adorable and all so nice!

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Later that evening my Uncle and Aunt through a huge party with tons of food and cocktails. The amazing thing about Zimbabwe is it doesn't take a long time to plan a party. I think a majority of the people that came were invited the same day or maybe a day prior? These guys definitely know how to party ALL the time!

The next day we visited family and got to experience the families Hindu culture by going to a Pre Diwali Celebration. There was so many people dressed in beautiful clothes. Kenzie says she wants one , however you are unable to purchase any of the saris here in Zimbabwe.

Every day is blending together and it's going so fast. We are only here a couple more days and I just can't get over the weather and the beauty I have seen in this country. I don't want to come back home because people just are not as friendly back in the states.

Yesterday we visited Dumboshava, when I thought Zimbabwe couldn't get more beautiful it does. This place was breathtaking and relaxing. We went during sunset so it wasn't super hot climbing up. This kids enjoyed the walk up because it was all rock! The blog is not allowing me to upload pictures again so I will try to post them tomorrow!

Posted by TraughFamily 00:04 Archived in Zimbabwe Comments (0)

I have pictures!

Most of this week I did not have WIFI or a strong enough signal to upload pictures. This week has been WILD!

Here are some pictures of the Botswana Safari.
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The little ones had to stay back with their aunts and uncles since they were too young!
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I do not have any pictures of white water rafting, however Seth brought along the GoPro so we have video footage!

The walk down was all steep steps my legs were shaking so bad by the time we got to the bottom. The view at the bottom was AMAZING. I am glad I experienced it however I would NEVER do it again. There were 19 rapids to go through. I fell off at rapid 4 or 5 at the top of the rapids and was under water going down the entire thing. I thought I was going to die! That drained all my energy out and I bailed with Lindsay at rapid 11. The walk up was a straight cliff it was exhausting especially after white water rafting for a couple hours. We all joined back together and had a lovely lunch.

The next day we flew out of Victoria Falls to go back to Harare. We spent the evening relaxing and swimming.
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The next day we woke up at 4am to go to Lake Kariba! We stayed on a house boat for 2 nights. The drive was super long, took about 6.5 hours but the views on this boat was worth it. The sunsets are perfect especially with animals in the background and there are so many stars you can see the milky way! The boat was not exactly child proof so it was a bit stressful but we all managed to survive. You are not allowed to swim in the lake due to crocs and Hippo's but the younger men decided to jump off the boat!

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The drive home was long again, it's interesting to see that most families live in huts and how poor the country really is. We stopped at the Chinoy Caves for a break. More beautiful views.
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We are now back in Harare and today we will be seeing my Grandma's house (She passed away about 20 years ago)
Seth also goes back home today so pray for a safe trip and for my sanity to have the kids by myself for the next week!

Posted by TraughFamily 23:37 Archived in Zimbabwe Comments (0)

Botswana Safari

Yesterday, October 12th, we went to Zimbabwe's bordering country Botswana for our Safari and Boat ride. I can not believe the amazing animals we saw during this trip! We managed to see MANY Giraffes, Impalas, Elephants and Hippo's. Also saw two lion and a leopard! We were unable to take Zeke since he was two young so he stayed back with his aunts and uncles from Zimbabwe. Let me tell you as much as I do trust my family it is still hard to leave your child behind in a different country with no way of contact until we got back! ( He ended up having a fun day swimming and playing in sand)

I am unable to post any pictures on this site, will try again once I'm back in Harare and can use a computer.

Today we will be going white water rafting. This was one of the only things I said I would NOT do.. but here I am ugh. I will be leaving my phone behind so only pictures taken will be from our GoPro.

The weather is next to perfect here. The mornings and nights are around 70 degrees and during the day around 90-95. I could not handle the mosquitos here though. We have to sleep inside mosquito nets because they are so bad at night. We have been sharing one Queen size bed with our two kids so they don't get bit. I've had no sleep and for the past few days and I've had to get up at 3-4am almost everyday. We have only had one sleep in day since Zimbabwe.

Posted by TraughFamily 20:25 Archived in Botswana Comments (0)

FALLS & BOMA

95 °F

hello! We are still alive! It is near impossible to update because WiFi is slim to none here. It has taken me 2 days to write this blog.

Yesterday we went and saw Victoria Falls. It was incredible, however this is the dryest season and they are having a drought so the water was very low or non existent in some areas.

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We also saw an African school having a field trip. Can you imagine sending your child to Victoria Falls, on a field trip? (Mind you 95% of the borders are not there or consist of thorn bushes instead of a fence!) I've noticed in Africa the children are always waving at us even when we are driving on the road they stop walking and wave. It may be the cutest thing! The female adults are very concerned about how I wear Zeke. I've been scolded a couple times on his neck not being supported!

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Afterwords we relaxed by the watering hole near our lodge and we saw a giraffe!
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We ended the night going to The Boma, which is an interactive drumming and dance dinner. This place was so cool! They are known for eating a Mopami worm. Seth ate the worm and got a certificate, however it wasn't worth the certificate for me & the kids!
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Kenzie and I also got our hair braided by a nice lady named Hazel! Will post pics of her braid in next blog since it is not allowing me to upload any more pictures!

Posted by TraughFamily 11:54 Archived in Zimbabwe Comments (0)

Victoria Falls

94 °F

Today we took Air Zimbabwe to Victoria Falls. The plane was so old it still had Ash trays on the seats, and it played old school country music like the Dixie chicks!
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We arrived safely to Lokuthula Lodge, and I have never been any more Impressed!
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Animals are everywhere! If you look hard enough you will see something! We have mostly seen warthogs, mongoose, baboons, monkeys and a type of antelope that looks almost like our deer. My husband and parents went on a walk and saw an elephant! The living area in our lodge opens up all the way so all these animals walk right up to the lodge. They will come in of they smell food so everything has to be locked up when we are not around.

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We spent the afternoon going shopping at the local town which is quite annoying because we stick out so bad and everyone wants our money.
The prices on their groceries are pretty funny to look at compared to ours. It's about 18-20 dollars per one American dollar. They do not have many choices in groceries like we do. Their stores are close to our Aldi except A LOT of Alcohol. Most drinks look to be cheaper than water, which is annoying considering you can't drink their water. The nice thing about Zimbabwe is they do not have any GMOs in their foods. I've noticed allergies are not common here compared to the States.
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After shopping we swam and relaxed. Traveling is exhausting!
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Posted by TraughFamily 11:13 Archived in Zimbabwe Comments (0)

Imire Rhino & Wildlife conservation

Yesterday we went to Imire Rhino & Wildlife Conservation. It was AMAZING. The entire place is beautiful.

We got to see many animals up close, feed an elephant, watch a lion devour Impala, and eat an amazing meal overlooking the reservation.

The Rhinos and Elephants have anti poachers that follow them around to make sure they are always safe. They have had poachers sneak into the reserve and kill in the past. I also learned that they are unable to treat the animals for tics so they have lots of cows that are treated to manage the tic issue.

These pictures are in a crazy random order. Will try to update at a better time, I am posting on my phone and it's not the easiest thing to do!

In Zimbabwe the government controls the electricity. It is only on certain times of the day. Thankfully my family has solar panels and generators to make up for it however not everything works during these times.

Today we are leaving on a plane for Victoria Falls, Zambia and Botswana. Will update later!

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Posted by TraughFamily 19:33 Archived in Zimbabwe Comments (0)

Culture shock!

sunny

This will be short since I wrote a ton and it all deleted.

We arrived in Zimbabwe about 3am this morning, it took about 2 hours to get through customs. We were all OVER traveling at this point. Our luggage all arrived except the Zeke's and his cousin Gideon's carseats. This wouldn't be an issue of we were in the US, however in Zimbabwe there is no carseat laws so getting a carseat is a no go. I also discovered that only a handful of traffic lights work. You ever watch those videos of cars going through intersections with no traffic lights? Yep, makes me a bit uneasy.

I learned very quick today that I need to get over my fear of spiders. I have only seen them in the bedrooms and let me tell you these guys are HUGE. In Zimbabwe it is good luck to have spiders in your home so you should not kill them. I'm currently lying in bed with one next to me on the wall!!!

My family is all very amazing and generous they are always making sure we are comfortable, not hungry and the kids are happy. They also have servants that live behind their house, that do a ton around the house... something you won't see in the states. So far The food is delicious and the kids are enjoying their cousins!

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Posted by TraughFamily 14:45 Archived in Zimbabwe Comments (0)

Safe in Kenya!

70 °F

We arrived safely in Kenya! Unfortunately we are stuck in the airport for 10 hours. On a good note we found a lounge to hang out in that has nice seats, food and showers. (It's a pretty new lounge because it was bombed by terrorist not too long ago.) The kids all did amazing on long the flight here! Thank the Lord for Kindles! Kenzie ended up falling asleep the last hour of the flight ( 2am Ohio time but 9 am Kenya time!) Zeke did not fall asleep until we landed.

So far even just in the airport Kenya is pretty cool! Many friendly and helpful people. We also got to experience a customer appreciation party, that was full of loud music and dancing!

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Posted by TraughFamily 08:17 Archived in Kenya Comments (0)

New York City!

54 °F

We made it safely to New York City! We got to experience flying on a super tiny plane, 2 seats on one side and only one on the other! Kenzie and Zeke both did great on this short teaser flight!

We planned on visiting the city however time did not work in our favor and the kids are definitely tired, so we are just staying in the hotel for the evening.
Tomorrow will be our longest flight to Kenya! We will be leaving Sunday afternoon and not arriving until Monday morning. With time change I still can't wrap my head around how many hours this all takes, but I believe from start to finish it will take us 57 hours to arrive in Zimbabwe!

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Posted by TraughFamily 15:52 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Three more sleeps, ONE more night of work!

83 °F

Just a couple more days and we are off! Some of you know that I took on a new job last week. Let me tell you... between that, packing, and the fact we had to buy an ENTIRE new bathroom all in the past 2 weeks has life pretty stressful. I can only just pray that our flight out will be calm with the kids!

Okay 1:23am, let my vacation start!!
-Alyssa

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Posted by TraughFamily 10:53 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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