First steps in Lesotho



// Nikon D7200 | -29.82772 : 27.5997 | alt. 1822m

After a freezing night (it went to -2 inside the van), I had a lot of work before leaving South Africa.
Winter is hard in Lesotho, which is mostly above 2000m, and there is a good chance of snow on the way. And since most of the roads are bad, I have to make sure everything’s good on the mechanical side.
More brake fluids, more engine oil, some coffee for me, more coolant, tyre pressure test, suspension adjustment, an extra coffee (jeez it’s cold !) battery charging to optimal condition, refuel, fill up the water tank, some extra food, laundry, one more coffee, shower, and blog update and emails :p
That took a few hours to complete but I’m now ready to cross the next border !

On the South African border, everything is way too serious, at least looks too serious because they don’t even want to bother with my carnet :p Fair enough, I’ll be back to SA very soon.
Crossing the bridge, and change of mood, everyone is friendly, smile on the face, shaking hands, customs guys are using their right to search my vehicle to visit the back of mister Fox…… all at once !
The main topic was obviously why am I travelling alone……. I’m getting tired of this question, just leave me alone !!!
Alright, all done quickly and properly with a smile, I am now in Lesotho !
You can tell you are in a different country…… and a poor one. Nothing like South Africa or Namibia. Lot of rudimentary houses, not a single one with painted walls, lot of garbage everywhere, almost no car (I’m even wondering why they have roads :p) and fields in very poor condition (not much rain in Lesotho, and it only comes in the form of sudden and massive thunderstorms, eroding the soil).
EVERY single person is watching me like I came from space…. it’s funny at first, but quickly gets embarrassing…. alright, I will have to deal with it. But it’s putting some pressure, and I cannot imagine having a breakdown here, with hundreds of people gathering around the van, but barely no one speaking english.

So I kept driving across these beautiful landscapes and mountains to make it to a tourist stop, the Malealea lodge, located in the mountains, next to the gate of paradise (a 2000m pass overlooking the entire mountain range).

This seems more like classic campgrounds in Namibia, expensive and well organised. Let this be the first and last like this :p But it’s always nice to have a nice place to stay for the first night in a new country, with beers and warm food.
Since it is really cold here (we expect -5, maybe -10 tonight), they gave me a key to a lodge (with no extra fee) to stay warm, very kind !

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