Addicted to Africa – Faye Anderson Blog
We recently introduced Faye Anderson in a blog, celebrating her 10th Nomad Tour, in the meantime she has taken on a much more hands on role and has diarised all her experiences to inspire and intrigue any future Nomads who want to discover the many wonders of Africa. We’ll be sharing a blog every week, be sure to keep an eye out for them.
I embarked on my first trip to Africa in 2011, and at the time, I thought it would be a once off trip. Fortunately, it would be the start of something great for many years to come of touring this wonderful continent.
After 2011, I returned the following year to tour East Africa again from Uganda to Victoria Falls. I then decided that I should at least do one tour of South Africa before deciding that I’ve explored the country sufficiently. However, the guides always play a big part in showing me that you can never explore a country enough!
The tour of East Africa started from the Nomad office in Cape Town and was headed for Victoria Falls. As the tour began, I remember thinking “this is nothing like I expected, where are the animals? The people dressed like the Masai?”. I started to think that I had made a mistake in my choice of tour. I paddled in a canoe down the Orange River, walked the rim of Fish River Canyon, both very impressive but still not what I was expecting.
My mind was so set on what I thought I wanted to see. Something I think we are all guilty of doing, and forgetting to look at the bigger picture. However, this slowly started to change when I did a guided walk through the desert and into Sossusvlei. It was during this time, when our guide showed us the life under the sand, that I experienced a turning point. I began to really see that there was more to this than just sand. I was disappointed that I had only realised this now, and had missed out on appreciating similar moments that had passed on the tour. At least now, I was finally seeing Africa.
From this point forward, I went from disliking the trip, to “OMG I have just got to come back again and again until I see it all”. This desert is a very small part of Africa but enough to know that there is still so many other areas that I need to explore.
I was travelling with two Nomad guides whom were very driven and passionate about their roles within the company. They made sure that I got the best from this tour and made me feel welcomed into their world. I believe guides in all companies can either make or break a company and these Nomad guides do their job so well that I have become a repeat customer. In fact, I have now returned 8 times and have been on 10 tours.
There is not one particular thing that brings me back, it’s a combination of the people, landscapes, national parks, the animals, the weather, the uncertainty and that every day is different and exciting. It’s still that feeling it’s my first day in a new country, seeing new things for the first time. I watch new clients getting excited about all sorts of things and I know just how they feel as I am still that new client as well. To me, sitting in the back seat of that big white truck and traveling with lots of other like-minded people is the ultimate way to see and experience the real Africa. I have not finished with Africa yet as there is still so many more places to visit and to catch up with the many friends I now have.
Am I Addicted ….. ? Life doesn’t get much better.