Mtshabezi Dam…

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Built in a long narrow valley, Mtshabezi Dam is long and deep. These two photos are taken in the bright overhead sunlight, in the mid day.

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It was a bit later, when I took this one:

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Fishermen, who brave the road with their boats, launch just in front of where I was standing.

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I really like this rock (above)with the trees growing out of them. I tried to line it up with another interesting rock in the foreground, but it just didn’t gel. I’ll try again when I get the boat into the water.

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The trees are beginning to shed their leaves and that orange, is actually leaves, not flowers.

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I liked the stark white of this dead tree – taken in the late afternoon light. Im thinking someone good at manipulating RAW images might have fun with it.

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These last images were taken with fading light.

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Cain…

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I took this photo (above) in Esigodini – I don’t want to say much about this man – too often we have opinions of other’s dress/life-choices/houses and probably shouldn’t, cos we don’t walk in their shoes.

 

Sand Olive…

I came across this tree near the Enzamalanga trig beacon in Esigodini. The area is very rocky and crisscrossed with paths and tiny roads used by small miners and people who are called Tshekedsha (the name comes from the sound made when the sieve is shaken during the gold panning process.)  Most Tshekedsha are illegally mining and they make quite a mess of the environment.

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http://www.randomharvest.co.za/South-African-Indigenous-Plants/Show-Plant/PlantId/140?Plant=Dodonaea%20angustifolia

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It looks a little like a combretum, but I’m told it isn’t.

It is often planted in areas that were deforested and so easily establishes itself here where the soil was bare and dug over.

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The cream colours of this bush show up strongly all along the hillsides at this time of the year…

Esigodini…

Is a little village about fifty kilometres from Bulawayo heading south towards Johannesburg. The town and buildings have changed since I grew up there, but the surrounding countryside is much the same.P1280921

And that’s about it in the main street! The Why Not Hotel’s paint job is a little garish next to the post office’s more traditional one!

And then we leave the town for the countryside…

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I chose to avoid a $2.00 toll gate and took this road! (Heading South west.)

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Looking south and late in the evening, is an unusual view of the Matopos (although one I’ve posted here before, but taken in the morning.)

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OK, so this is a bit of a cheat! I didn’t HAVE to go on this road to avoid the toll! But I did in order to follow the sunset! You know, I think taking photos is sort of like surfing. Like a surfer, waiting for that perfect wave, I sit around in the freezing evenings, or walk up just one more hill, or drive my poor car down roads like this one above – looking for that perfect shot! Always just around the corner!

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The sunset was worth driving home in the dark (I don’t have the best night sight!)

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It’s cold now (temperatures are just over 0 degrees C)

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This last pic is taken on the main Johannesburg road – and it was eina cold!

Mtshabezi Dam…

We visited Mtshabezi (pronounced mmm cha bezi) Dam a while ago, and I noticed aloes on the road through the gorge. Since there are lovely aloes out all over Matabeleland, I thought it would be an idea to take pics there. None were out!!! But I couldn’t have picked a better day for a visit.

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This first photo was taken on the (very bumpy) road over the gorge.

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We  had the place to ourselves, other than a few civilised fishermen – instead of noisy motorboats! The weather was kind – bright sunlight at midday, and then the wind tailed off until the water was like glass in the evening.

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A recent addition to Bulawayo’s water supply, Mtshabezi is a picturesque dam built in the 1990’s. It’s on the southern end of the Matopos about 40km from the Gwanda/Bulawayo rd.

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I love the rocks sitting in the water.

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Mtshabezi is almost full still, which is pretty good considering the rainy season was middling.

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I’m thinking of carrying the canoe on top of the car so I can paddle further upstream – Ill get some lovely pics, I’m sure. Im reliably informed that there are no crocs or hippos in this dam. Hippo make quick work of canoes!

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https://www.industryabout.com/country-territories-3/2545-zimbabwe/hydro-energy/39527-mtshabezi-dam

Rhodes’ Grave…

Cecil John Rhodes is buried on top of “Malindidzimu,” in the Matopos. He called the place “Worlds View.” Although to be honest, I know of way better places to view the Matopos.

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Roughly translated Malindidzimu means, “Hill of Spirits,” or perhaps more specifically, “Place of Benevolent Spirits.”

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The view is pretty good from here.

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These two pics, above and below, are taken from a bench soon after the carpark (before the climb to the grave site.)

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I couldn’t resist this red tree – I had to get it into the photo somehow!

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And of course, when I was up there, had to go to visit old friends! (Above) I just LOVE this tree, although the Russian guy we gave a lift to, was not impressed with what I called a “tree!” I think he probably had more descriptive names in Russian, like “scrub” or “bush!”

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If you look carefully, there is a white cross on the top of that hill. It can also be seen at Maleme Dam (a fair distance from World’s View.)

 

Off to the store…

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I took this pic just after Silozwe School, on the way to the shops…

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Lines of stores such as these above are common in Zimbabwe at “centres” designated for shops by the councils. They open very early and close very late and most often charge exorbitant amounts for their products.

This one above is Silozwe business centre, the school a couple of kilometre up the road.