Homelessness takes on a new meaning with a Land Rover and roof top tent saving wildlife in Africa.
Sitting next to our Land Rover, listening to the weaver birds chattering as they build their nests life in a car doesn’t seem half bad. But then, the weather is superb… sunny, mild with just the hint of a breeze.
Internet access, now that’s another story… as are hot showers. However, where we are parked right now both are pretty good. Though the shower water temperature changes constantly… must be when others on the property use it, I guess. As far as posting photos, well, have to watch to make sure it happened… as sometimes it does and then again it doesn’t.
A bit about our ‘Landy’ (Land Rover)
Russ spent months researching the type of vehicle that would be best to live and travel in during our six month stay here in Africa (we’re here to help people saving wildlife.) I’ll let him tell that story sometime soon… right now he is getting the finally things organized as we finished building our drawers yesterday. He has had so much fun!
Anyway, our Landy is awesome! Fully equipped with roof top tent, that’s one that opens up on top of the vehicle to the side with ladder access. Ours has a queen sized mattress, so nice and comfy. There’s also a lower tent that attaches and creates a ground floor that we use when it rains or is cold for sitting, changing, preparing meals and eating… and of course reading and writing.
What about everything else?
Okay, it has a good sized fridge that runs both on 12 volt and 220… so nice to keep those fruits and veggies cold. Russ has other electricals all set up for charging and running everything from our little laptops to his shaver. The Landy has long range fuel tanks so we can go hundreds of kilometers, which is needed in some parts. Along with that there’s a 20 liter built in water tank with spigot as well as an extra jerry can on the roof right next to the one filled with more diesel. Of course there’s a high lift jack and another type of jack to get us unstuck if necessary, plus a shovel and axe both attached to the roof rack. There’s also a large gas bottle for cooking with its own bracket attachment above the spare tire.
Russ just reminded me to mention the winch up front and the spotlights. Saw how essential the winch was during our 4×4 training course when the Land Cruiser just ahead of us ended up sliding sideways into the bush, during the steep downhill exercise, and needed to be winched out.
Did you know that a snorkel intake is not for negotiating deep river crossings, though it does help, it is primarily so the vehicle can ‘breathe’ cleaner air on dirt roads! That reminds me, good pouches (zip locks work well too and are inexpensive) are important for keeping electronics protected from the dust.
Then there’s the awning for extra shade. Some comfortable camping chairs and fold up table are of course a must.
During our last stay here my mother gave us about five duffel bags of different sizes to choose from, well, we use them all. They are perfect for organizing. One has all our kitchen paraphernalia, another our shoes, one has our books and yet another is just right for miscellaneous extra stuff.
We found that large duffels make the best drawers/closet space for our clothes. One oversized-duffel contains everything needed for sleeping, plus our old tent from the last Africa Wildlife Tour earlier this year.
Oh yes, then there are the drawers. Under the platform in the back there were two spaces for drawers. Russ looked high and low for some that might fit with no luck. Then he tried to find someone who’d make us some and finally decided we’d do it ourselves. They turned out pretty darn good.
What about security? One reason for our signage and window tint (yet to be installed) and keeping everything low profile and covered. Important documents and such are duplicated and kept separate and tucked away.
A disadvantage to life in a Landy is that we have to close up the tent anytime we want to go somewhere, which is practically every day. However, we’ve gotten it down to a fine art and can take down and set up in about twenty minutes. Sure life in a Landy is not terrible time efficient as we spend a lot of time packing and unpacking… however, it’s really part of life here, more into being than performing and at our age it fits us perfectly.
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