Upon reaching the villages a new guide, Justin greeted us to provide a tour and tell us about Zulu life and beliefs. In order to marry a man must produce a dowry of 11 cows. Justin has enough cows to marry but wants to wait a few more years so the cows will breed more before he marries the mother of his child!
Once the daughters are married they will move away with their husbands and families. The single men will stay with their own mother and father until they marry, or if they stay single, remain at the family home to care for the father and mother when they are old. Family is the foundation of Zulu culture. Justin still lives with his 83 year old father and 68 year old mother in the village...
We entered an ancestral hut which is used by the family to communicate with their ancestors. The night before the contact they will place something the deceased was known to enjoy such as a cigar, whiskey, or some female finery so that when the loved one returns they can enjoy their earthly pleasures! Upon our return to Ghost Mountain Inn we were entertained at dinner with beautiful and soulful singing by our waiters and waitresses, truly an amazing day and evening!
On Friday, 8/14, a morning of leisure was welcome after our busy few days! Staying at the Ghost Mountain Inn was a great pleasure, beautiful surroundings and gracious hosts; truly a joy. For the afternoon we headed to Hiuhluwe-Imfolazi Game Reserve and proceeded to enjoy a second game experience. This reserve is very different from Kruger National Park with vast open vistas making wildlife viewing more challenging! As soon as we travelled off road we began to see wart hogs, nyala, elephants, rhinoceros and a herd of Cape buffalo which our guide Jean estimated to number about 150!
The highlight for me was when we came upon a lone giraffe just walking down the road in front of our vehicle. We followed along until he took a right turn and continued on...Our trip ended with the sighting of a huge bull elephant near the road just enjoying his stroll and the vegetation; A solitary giant with enormous ears and unconcerned with our presence or the rest of the world!