South Africa 1972

Another of our BOAC staff trips, this time we flew to J'burg, and visited Chris's Uncle Len. From here we went to Soweto on a tour, and I went to the Gold Mines ( women not allowed)

It was not easy getting used to Apartheid in South Africa. Separate activities for blacks whites and 6 or 7 colours in between. Len had a live in couple of servants - they had a shed in the garden - and this seemed par for the course in white suburbia. Soweto was where most of the blacks lived, a vast sprawling area on the edge of J'burg. And when we got to the coast there were about 10 beaches, each reserved for a different colour. Bus stops had different queues for blacks and whites, and buses different areas for different colours



Rhodesia & Victoria Falls

We rented a car and drove north to Rhodesia, as it still was. I was particularly impressed by Cecil Rhodes grave, More recently the Zimbabwe Government threaten to exhume his bones on a regular basis, but he has so far remained in situ. The through Wanki National Park ( a few weeks later some tourists were killed when a land mine was exploded under their car, and on to Victoria Falls (again a tourist was shot a few months later in May 1973 by a sniper firing across the river.)

We met some friends at Vic Falls who were working in Zambia. They drove to the Zambia side and walked over the bridge to meet us

We stayed at the impressive Vic Falls Hotel, a little run down at that time due to international sanctions against the white Smith Rhodesian Government. The falls themselves are actually quite difficult to see as the Zambezi plunges into quite a narrow gorge made by the river, and one never gets far enough away to appreciate the size of the falls

We headed back to J'burg , saw a farm breeding crocodiles for leather, and got back to J#burg, where we took a flight to Capetown


Garden Route, Swaziland & Kruger

Our route took us along the coast. The ostrich farm was an unusual detour. We also called on Jill Weldon in Durban, who was not particularly welcoming. The inland via Swaziland, and independent country, that was not under South African control, so did not have the apartheid restrictions, and on into the Kruger National Park. One would no longer see rhinos in the number that existed then, as poaching has decimated rhino numbers


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