Off topic long-shot question

MEV

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Anyone one here been to south africa and/or namibia recently? I leave in a few weeks and the violence down there has me spooked. Lots of $$ tied up in the trip and the outfitter says it dosent warrant delaying for a year
 

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Hey there MEV - I had to take a trip to Durban at the end of 2019 (my mom fell while getting off a cruise ship a snapped her femur in two). I was only there for 30 hours total, and never left the Durban area, but I could tell there were parts of town that were fine, and parts of town that were not. Used Uber the whole time and relied on the drivers to let me know where I should go and where I shouldn’t. I never felt threatened, but there is definitely some cultural adjustments that you’ll need to make. There are still very much ‘white areas’ and ‘black areas’. Not designated with signs or anything, but something to be aware of (which I wasn’t when I went to buy some needs for my mom the first day - I am white BTW). I will say though that when I was in the ‘black stores’ and explained my situation about my mom, everyone was extremely helpful. One store keeper even walked with me to another store to help find some items she didn’t carry. Again, I never felt threatened, just out of place.

you mentioned an outfitter, does this mean you are part of a bigger, organized group? If part of a group, I would venture to guess they are even more dialed in from a safety perspective.

and while I have not yet been tested on this, when I travel I carry two wallets. A small one in my front pocket that is my real wallet and a second ‘dummy’ one in my back pocket. The dummy wallet has an expired ID and expired credit cards and just enough cash (US and local cash) to satisfy a potential mugger … say $100 or so. Plenty of smaller bills to make it look better. If you have an expired passport, you can have that in your back pocket too to make it look that much more legit. The thought process here is if you do find yourself in a difficult situation you can hand over the dummy wallet…. The crook isn’t going to take the time to look at expiration dates on cards and they are more likely interested in the cash any way. The theory seems to be solid at least.

I’d also suggest wearing a cheap digital watch, the kind you find at Walmart for like $20. Even if you wear a less expensive analog watch, say like a Fossil brand, it still looks expensive and may garner unwanted attention. You may also want to consider an inexpensive digital camera if you’re going snap pictures as opposed to pulling out your $1,000 smart phone every time. Just some thoughts.

if you make the trip, please post some pics.

safe travels!
 

MEV

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Hey there MEV - I had to take a trip to Durban at the end of 2019 (my mom fell while getting off a cruise ship a snapped her femur in two). I was only there for 30 hours total, and never left the Durban area, but I could tell there were parts of town that were fine, and parts of town that were not. Used Uber the whole time and relied on the drivers to let me know where I should go and where I shouldn’t. I never felt threatened, but there is definitely some cultural adjustments that you’ll need to make. There are still very much ‘white areas’ and ‘black areas’. Not designated with signs or anything, but something to be aware of (which I wasn’t when I went to buy some needs for my mom the first day - I am white BTW). I will say though that when I was in the ‘black stores’ and explained my situation about my mom, everyone was extremely helpful. One store keeper even walked with me to another store to help find some items she didn’t carry. Again, I never felt threatened, just out of place.

you mentioned an outfitter, does this mean you are part of a bigger, organized group? If part of a group, I would venture to guess they are even more dialed in from a safety perspective.

and while I have not yet been tested on this, when I travel I carry two wallets. A small one in my front pocket that is my real wallet and a second ‘dummy’ one in my back pocket. The dummy wallet has an expired ID and expired credit cards and just enough cash (US and local cash) to satisfy a potential mugger … say $100 or so. Plenty of smaller bills to make it look better. If you have an expired passport, you can have that in your back pocket too to make it look that much more legit. The thought process here is if you do find yourself in a difficult situation you can hand over the dummy wallet…. The crook isn’t going to take the time to look at expiration dates on cards and they are more likely interested in the cash any way. The theory seems to be solid at least.

I’d also suggest wearing a cheap digital watch, the kind you find at Walmart for like $20. Even if you wear a less expensive analog watch, say like a Fossil brand, it still looks expensive and may garner unwanted attention. You may also want to consider an inexpensive digital camera if you’re going snap pictures as opposed to pulling out your $1,000 smart phone every time. Just some thoughts.

if you make the trip, please post some pics.

safe travels!
Me and 5 hunting buddies on a hunting safari. We will only be in johannesberg 1 night going to and returning thru there. The rest of the time we will be hunting in namibia
 

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Me and 5 hunting buddies on a hunting safari. We will only be in johannesberg 1 night going to and returning thru there. The rest of the time we will be hunting in namibia

Wow! Pictures please!

The only place I hunted was Iraq and Kuwait......
 

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If you think you and your buddies are going to explore Joburg on the days you’re there, consider hiring a private driver. The driver will know all the right places to go, plus they are right hand drive cars there. Not only is it worth the money for the driver, you’ll reduce your risk of turning driving down the wrong side of the street.
 
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68PK21 440.6bbl

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Itchy Boots motorcycle world traveler blogger has just traveled through Namibia in the past month or so, you may want to watch some of her videos to get a idea of what it's like. She's been in South Africa for about 4 months now, I watched quite a bit of her first part of the journey but haven't been back to see her progress since she was leaving the tip of Africa. Most of what I saw in the rural parts of South Africa was that they were mostly Dutch settlers from a century ago and not much problems going on. You may want to speed watch through her videos to get a idea on whats going on. Also search for the unrest videos on YouTube, from what I saw in the past month is in the urban areas where the tribe that supports the ex-president that just got jailed for corruption it's total lawlessness and his tribe wants him out of jail.

https://www.youtube.com/c/ItchyBoots/videos

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68PK21 440.6bbl

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I just had a view of Itchy Boots final videos leaving South Africa, the one where she tours the Diamond mine and gets shown around by the mercenary security guards. Doesn't sound all that great, she left with a 'Lawless Land' comment.

Here's a screenshot of the entrance to some ATV(?) off road wildlife adventure park in South Africa where she stayed for a few nights. (notice the electric fence)

03-08-21.Itchy Boots.I CAN'T continue...[S5 - Eps.5].003.Gated.Compound.In.SA.jpg


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When I was in Durban, seemed like everything had a wall around it with an electric fence on top. I was staying at a bed and breakfast a block from my moms hospital and asked about the electric fences. The inn keeper mentioned that they are a legacy from the Apartheid days but everyone still feels as though they are a necessity. Probably something similar to our ADT and Ring home security systems here.

The country is by no means a Shangi-La, but I do think some things we see as a sign of concern from a US perspective is a bit more commonplace there.
 

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My self and my daughter have been to Capetown - for her it was 4 months, but that not the same as Joberg. She said her friends who are there are definitely seeing more violence in the areas you are traveling because of the political unrest. Probably avoid the late night strip club. On the bright side the tourist industry knows where its bread is buttered so while on Safari I would think things would be smooth. Im assuming this is private reserve but be aware of any of their off limit animals. A dead rhino will get you some notice and some serious $ to bribe yourself out of it.
 

MEV

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My self and my daughter have been to Capetown - for her it was 4 months, but that not the same as Joberg. She said her friends who are there are definitely seeing more violence in the areas you are traveling because of the political unrest. Probably avoid the late night strip club. On the bright side the tourist industry knows where its bread is buttered so while on Safari I would think things would be smooth. Im assuming this is private reserve but be aware of any of their off limit animals. A dead rhino will get you some notice and some serious $ to bribe yourself out of it.
No plans to go anywhere in johannesurg but the airport and the hotel for 1 night. We land in namibia then spend the rest of our time about 70 miles outside of town.
 
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