African shoestrings – Lesotho Day seven
Malealea Lodge is at the top of a hill right next to Malealea Village. The lodge itself is a collection of chalets, huts, a dorm and a bar/store dotted among Pine trees and areas of brown lawn. Set to one side away from the other buildings, stood a colonial style house that the old man at the gate pointed us towards.
There we managed to find Mick Jones with his feet up on the veranda overlooking the Malotti. Mick owns and runs Malealea with his wife Di. At the time, Mick stayed all the time at the lodge whilst Di ‘commuted’ to their office in Bloemfontain in South Africa.
We watched Mick from our chalet veranda striding around and barking instructions at his employees in the local lingo, SeSotho, until the afternoon thunderstorms that had been threatening all afternoon, turned on a show.
Thunderstorms are a way of life here. Incredibly more people die in Lesotho from lighting strikes than any other single cause. Which is really surprising considering the way they drive! I suppose the bottom line is that a country as poor as Lesotho, it’s one of the world’s poorest, doesn’t have that many cars but does have plenty of people travelling by foot. When you travel by foot in such a mountainous country the risk of getting struck by lighting is relatively high.
That’s not to say that it’s unsafe to walk around Lesotho, it’s just some care is required during their thunderstorm season in the summer months.
The spectacle of these thunderstorms is a show not to be missed, especially after dark.
Watching this show brought home to us that we were actually living our dream. We were away from our home, family and friends travelling the world without a care, except that constant nagging fear of spending too much money. It was a great feeling and a place like this was what it was all about.