Friday, 30 September 2011

Have wasted another day of my life dealing with the insurance issues from the recent trip. The insurers have been fantastic but still ...

We are soon able to announce the locations for 2012 ... Inside Luxury Travel will be producing another series next year! Yay :)

So close ... maybe too close?
Where's the pilot?
A fabulous way to see the Okavagno Delta!

Thursday, 29 September 2011

The end of show photo ... with new friends in Maun, Botswana

We are home ... and we have all the kit we left Botswana with! Yay!

We have a few days of rest and recusitation before we jet off to India for 2 weeks ... the first in Mumbai and the second on tiger safari! Whoo-hoo! I am just so excited ...

Sleeeeeeeeeeeeeep :)

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Greetings from Johannesburg Airport (aka "the place where your baggage is opened illegally and items are stolen)! Next stop – London - and home ...

The last two days have been rather internet-free but I hope that our producer Emma has entertained you with her Daily Diary entries.

SO – the week in Botswana is over. I am a few shades darker ... at least five shades Tim reckons!

Two days ago, I was still in the lovely Xaranna Camp ... first up in the day – with my expert guide/personal ornithologist, botanist & zoologist AND action man, Jacques – I travelled by mokoro (boat) to meet with Joseph – a Bushman. He showed us how to hunt, snare and kill prey in the bush ... using bow & arrow, spear and knife - and how to light a camp-fire with just two sticks.

From there, Jacques and I went fishing! Yes – once again, I tried my hand at my least successful sport. Guess what folks? I caught bream ...! Yes – I did! No cheating (dynamite etc) ... and we ate it later! Yum! (Jacques caught two by the way!).

Yesterday we left Xaranna (sad) and flew to Maun ... where we checked in to a local hotel that served up awesome pizza!

Today we went to the Motse Wa Tsholofelo Daycare centre ... a school for 52 little tots – many who are orphans. I love working with &Beyond as the company supports the local community. It was a delightful 90-minutes filming and playing with the kiddies ... ahhhhh!

We had to bid a very sad farewell to Emm at Maun Airport this morning. She is the Regional Director for &Beyond in Botswana and has been looking after us so superbly! Merci Emm!

OK – home ... next week we are off to India!!! Wahoooooooo!!!!

 At the school with the little angels!
 With Nellie at Xaranna

Just in case Tim misbehaves
 With Joseph

With Jacques and Elicious on the mokoro

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Hello it's Emma here again - the boys are still without their technology somewhere in the African Bush. I have no idea what they've been up to today since they've not even managed a phone call... I know that tomorrow they are back to the city of Maun in Botswana for the last day of filming so should be back in touch by then.

In the meantime I have let my mind wander to memories of my own trips to Africa and to think about some of the amusing creatures I've been lucky enough to observe. Now everyone talks about the "Big Five" (Lion, Rhino, Buffalo, Elephant, Leopard) - but to be honest I think it's some of the smaller animals that add true character to the bush!

One of my favourites are the Warthogs, they look so "chunky" but they are pretty fast when they need to be!

Anyway - back to the BIG FIVE - there is in fact another list of FIVE

It's the "SMALL FIVE"

I've got them together here so you can see - it's a bit of fun really!

Buffalo Weaver

Elephant Shrew

Leopard Tortoise

Ant Lion

Rhino Beetle

I am sure Varun will be back with you tomorrow - Bye!

Monday, 26 September 2011

Due to the amazingly remote and peacful (except for the elephants and hippos) location where Varun, James and Tim are currently filming - they have no internet!!

Oh no!
Oh dear!
It's a disaster!

Well actually it is probably quite good for them to go back to communication basics for 48 hours or so.  They are certainly not totally removed from the luxuries of life with all that their Camp has to offer, and they are loaded down with technology in the filming kit sense - cameras, lights, tracks, memory cards, tapes etc.

Varun has called into the office today and reports that he has been catching fish, learning how to light a fire (the old fashioned non-firelighter way), and paddled a Mekoro (canoe).

I LOVE meerkats - I suspect it's all a bit too wet and watery in the the part of the Delta where the guys are filming today - but I am hoping somewhere along the way on this Botswana safari trip they have got some footage of these cute little creatures!

Bye for now - Emma - The Producer

Sunday, 25 September 2011

A short one today ... we have been out filming most of the day ... mostly elephants ... as they seem to own the Okavango Delta.

Hippos have been VERY annoying! All I want is some sleep! Is that too much to ask ...?

The team at work
Sunset ...
What a view! For you Elena!
One of the two all-night party hippos who kept me awake ALL night! thanks guys!

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Greetings from Heaven! Of course, I mean greetings from the Xaranna camp, deep in the Okavango Delta ...

We have been working hard - filming the camp ... but Tim did have time to go out fishing this evening ... and yes, he even caught dinner!

Cyril - a friend of James ...
View from my deck. 9 suites in total ... camp built in 2008.
Sunrise! Awesome!

Suite 1
The Xaranna Choir
Comfy bed ... for me!

James the Puppermaster

Friday, 23 September 2011

Greetings from Xaranna - my second & Beyond lodge here in Botswana.

I did not sleep last night. Two elephants decided to have an all-night party outside my room. It was noisy, messy and quite an experience! How I laughed as a huge bull tore a tree apart and then chewed on a green branch ... before his partner in crime stomped on an external light fitting!

So sad to say good-bye to Kate, Judy, Speedy and Bring ...

Off on a light aircraft for a 20 minute flight, followed by a 5 minute trip in a game-drive vehicle and then a 45 minute boat trip through reeds and waterways to Xaranna!

It's VERY different to Sandibe ... but it looks awesome! More tomorrow - off for a massage and a snooze!

arrival at Xaranna - warm, welcoming, genuine and tuneful!
The landing strip at Pom Pom

With Jacques, my guide on boat to Camp

Thursday, 22 September 2011


Bring and Speedy
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