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Wednesday, 30 June 2021

Swakopmund and the Skeleton Coast, Namibia - Page 3

Written by Richard Taylor
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We hiked past the rock formation called The Elephant (a fair likeness) and continued on to The Arch, a bridge of stone familiar to cineastes – it was here that Stanley Kubrick filmed his prancing monkey folk and black obelisks in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

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They shoot a lot of movies in Namibia,said Wolfgang after wed said our goodbyes to Gideon. All the Mad Max films.”

We were driving now along the treacherous stretch of coastline that extended through half of Namibia’s western flank. Wolfgang pointed out the battered hulk of a sunken Japanese frigate, one of many ships claimed by the Skeleton Coast over the years.

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We continued on to the Cape Cross Seal Reserve, remarkable both for its vast crush of seals and its crushing stench; the creatures were everywhere, bobbing in the sea, covering the rocks and beach, overflowing the parking lot. The general din suggested the bleating of sheep, punctuated by angry barks when the seals fought each other for space.

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Theyve eaten most of their food supply,said Wolfgang. A lot of them are starving.

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Two hours later, we had returned to Swako and its mists.

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The fogs persisted until late afternoon the next day (after I’d finished packing). I opened the door of my room. All was clear. The sun was bright. I left the lodge. A group of school children shouted and waved from a van. I waved back. I continued to the beach. There were more people now, scampering about the rocks, fleeing the waves of incoming foam with squeals of laughter. The pastel buildings and cafes were glowing, the surf gloriously lit and Swakopmund was Namibia’s resort town at last.

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Still too cold for flip-flops.



©Richard Taylor


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Last modified on Thursday, 01 July 2021

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