Thursday, September 27, 2007

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Spring began today in Namibia

The spring equinox

The same time that fall begins in the northern hemisphere, spring begins in the southern hemisphere. That means that the days start getting longer than the nights in Namibia.

Spring in Namibia (September 23 through December 22), means generally higher average temperatures (especially in the daytime) and the first rains and clouds since April. Though, like anywhere, daily temperatures and rainfall vary widely.

Namibian Climate

  • Namibia has a dry climate typical of a semi-desert country, where droughts are a regular occurrence.

  • Days are generally warm to very hot, while nights are generally cool.

  • Midsummer temperature can rise to over 40ºC (104ºF)

  • Winter days are warm but dawn temperatures can drop to freezing.

  • Along the coast the cold Benguela current is also the prime determinant of the climate of the Namib, as it reduces rainfall and causes the omnipresent fog typical of the coast.

  • The rainy season lasts from October to April. The rest of the year is dry and cloudless.


namibia climate chart

All areas of Namibia average more than 300 days of sunshine a year!

Click to convert mm to inches

Click to convert Cº to Fº

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Back on Daylight Savings Time in Namibia

On Sunday, September 2, Namibian clocks moved ahead by one hour. Namibia is the only country in Southern Africa to use Daylight Savings Time. Because spring is beginning there now and the daylight is getting longer, they changed the clocks to "spring forward" one hour. That means that the time difference between the USA and Namibia is one hour longer than it was before. For us in MN, that means they are now 7 hours ahead of us instead of 6. On November 2, when the USA goes off Daylight Savings Time, we gain another hour in difference. It's all very confusing. Want to know what time it is right now in Namibia? Check the clock on the right. Also check out these links from my post in April:

Daylight Savings Time

Monday, September 03, 2007

We have returned

Here are links to photos I posted on another blog (more will be added periodically):

Travel to and arrival in Namibia

In Windhoek

Windhoek to Anker

Amy's house and Yard in Anker

Sketch of Amy's house

Around Anker

Amy's school and hostel

Anker People

Etosha National Park

Etosha: Okaukeujo to Halali

Etosha: Halali at night

Etosha: Halali in the morning

Etosha: Halali to Namutoni

Map: Etosha to Waterberg

Lake Otjikoto


Otjiwarongo, Cheetah Conservation Project

Waterberg Plateau Park to Karibib

Swakopmund 1

Swakopmund 2

We returned from Namibia last Friday. After a weekend of unpacking, sleeping and talking to friends, it is great to have another day off before returning to work. Our trip went great. There were no major problems. The people we met were wonderful and Amy enjoyed introducing us to everyone. The highlights were:

--Travel- we survived the 24+ hours. Made every connection and all luggage arrived (with one brief delay). Got upgraded to a Toyota Avanza for free. All the school supplies fit in. I don't know what we would have done without the better car.

--Windhoek-As everyone seems to say, "Is this really Africa?. It is and it is a fun, vibrant city. We got to meet several PCV's on break and at work.

--Driving on the left with the steering on the right was different at first but I got used to it and going 150 (kph) on a completely straight road was fun.

--Amy's town of Anker - Sand, dust, dry-- but the people were so fun and friendly. Amy put on a braii and we got to help (okay. watch) them kill a sheep for us. Walking through the school and seeing the dedication of the teachers who get by on so little and yet want the best for the students was moving.

--Etosha - what can I say -- it lives up to all the hype. All the wonderful animals that became routine - springbok, zebra, kudu, elephant, giraffe everywhere. Among the many animals and birds that amazed us were lucky views of a leopard and Black Rhinos. The water hole at halali was outstanding.

--Tsumeb - what a suprisingly beautiful little town with flowers all over

--Waterberg- disappointing, but only because it was so cold that nothing was out during our early morning safari.

--Cheetahs - the cheetah conservation project in Otji was educational and worth the visit

--Swakopmund - another "Am I in Africa" moment. Two days to relax from our fast pace. The ocean, food and beach were great. I had my greatest "new bird" day ever. 20 new birds in one day (I am still compiling my notes from the trip and am at 88 new birds so far)

--5 hours on bumpy, desert and mountain roads to Sesriem, then 6 hours the next day on the same kind of roads to Windhoek. The worst roads I have ever driven. Felt that we would be returning the Avanza in a heap of rubble. Got one star crack on the windscreen.

--Sossusvlei - not enough time to see it, lots of walking, it was hot and we were tired. The place was massive and remote.

Finally, we had a great time with our daughter. We wore her out, I'm sure. Her pace of life is much different than ours. I am impressed with her commitment, her confidence and her communication skills. I could never do what she is doing and she is having fun at it. Her plan is to return to the US in December.

There, of course, was much more I could write about and maybe still will. Photos are possible too (We only have a thousand or so - no exaggeration!).