Stories of Maun

Maun – Place of Reeds


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I’ll never forget you…

As the year 2011 draws to a close, we look back.

We look back at what the year was, and we remember what we thought it would be. We look back at what happened this year, as we remember what we hoped would happen. We look back at the opportunities that had come our way, those we grabbed and those we lost, and we compare those to what we had hoped for at the beginning of the year. We remember our loved ones, the times we cherised with them this year, the good times and the bad, the laughter and the tears. We share a quiet moment for the heartbrakes, those we wronged, inside we ask their forgivness, whilse the ones we made smile seem to neutralise that sad feeling. We look back on a year that we could say was just like any other year, the only difference being in ourselves we were a year older, and maybe a year wiser, and so was the earth and all that she holds. But, we also look back, in review, on the path we have chosen to take, and in analysis we wonder where it will lead us to next.

A path. Where does it lead to? For we know where we come from on this path, but we know not yet where it leads. The only way to find out, is to continue on...

We have born witness to where our path has taken us so far. We lived with the consequences or our wrong choices, but at the same time we rejoiced in the delight of our right decisions. And now, just like we have several times before, we stand at a crossroads, at a junction. For in this new year, in this transition, into our lives we will usher in a new chapter. One filled with hope that we may reach where our hearts desire, but with hearts that have proven time and again that they can take the batter of disappointment and mishap. And, as we have done so before, we will venture into the next chapter, we will be the authors of our pages, and we will arrive at a place like this in a years time, where we will look back once again, the only difference being that we will be a year older, and hopefully a year wiser.

Happy New Year, I wish you all the best for 2012.


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Weekly Photo Challenge: Between

Here is my entry to the Weekly Photo Challenge themed Between.

In between.

The flight in this picture is In Between. Behind it lies 2011, represented by the empty blue sky. The occupants of the flight know what they leave behind them; in the vast blue expaneses of an empty sky lies the year that was, 2011, the opportunities that were abound in plenty, whether taken or abandoned, nonetheless were there for the taking. The emptiness and the flight moving forward represent that the occupants know what they leave behind and still they progress forward because it is the only path that can be taken. However, they progress with caution because they know not what the next chapter, 2012, holds for them.

The cloud that bears an uncanny resemblance to a plume of white smoke represents the year 2012, and the flight approaches this cloud. Smoke because it is unknown what awaits them, but white smoke at the same time because there is hope still for a brighter tomorrow, even in the face of uncertainty and dark days.


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The Thamalakane River

Through Maun flows the Thamalakane River. The river derives its flow from the Boro River, which itself is one of the main channels that drains the Okavango Delta. The Thamalakane in turn feeds the Boteti River, which begins its course at Toteng, almost 70km South West of Maun.

The Thamalakane River

I’m sure most, if not all Maun residents will recognise where this is. For years the river would dry up during the dry months and only have water again during the rainy season, when an influx of water comes in from the Okavango Delta, which gets its water from the Angolan Highlands and the Kavango River.

However the past few years have seen big floods and the revival of waterways once thought to be extinct, and as such the Thamalakane flows year round. Even the boundary fence of the Lechwe Centre Educational Park has gone under, as can be seen in this next picture.

View of The Educational Park

As a result of the flooding, the park has been closed to the public the past two years as water resides even inside the park, which it never has before.

These pictures form part of the ‘thamalakane river’ album, be sure to check out the rest of the pictures here.

Happy last few days of 2011! ­čÖé


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Christmas Day excitement

Yes, I know, Christmas was three days ago. But hey, can you blame me if I only got over this now?

A hippopotamus in the Thamalakane River

I tell you, it’s not often that you get to see a hippo, even when you have a river such as the Thamalakane flowing through your┬á home village. So when a sighting does occur, it is usually coupled with excitement, more so that we spotted this particular boy (or girl) on a family outing to Samedupi on Christmas Day.

Now the event didn’t last long, under 2 minutes I should say, and the hippo kept diving under (we only saw his head, like in the picture above, twice), but just the mere fact that there was a hippo to be seen was enough to send jolts of excitement through the group. The little ones were most excited, with the older group members lifting them up to say “there, there, do you see it?”.

Wild animal visitation and sightings are not unheard of in and around Maun, with the occasional reports of elephant and sometimes buffalo coming close to the village. This is because of Maun’s proximity to the Okavango Delta.

Happy festives everyone!


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Time for a test drive…

No, not a vehicle test drive, but merely me attempting my first blog post. Blame that on a lack of a better term, or allow me to regress and rather say “Time to get my feet wet…”

But then again, now you might think this is a blog about swimming. In the river. Eish.

Welcome to the Stories of Maun blog. As I have made aware, this is my first post (and I hope Stories of Maun shows up there somewhere). This is just a blog about Maun, the quiet and yet oh so busy village (although it’s more than big enough to be a town) in the North West District of Botswana, sometimes referred to as the Ngamiland.

Maun, as most if not all locals will tell you, is The Place of Reeds. Well, Place of Reeds is the ‘official’ nickname, but more so because Maun literally is a place of reeds, with the beautiful Thamalakane River flowing through the village. It is also the famed Gateway to the Okavango Delta (no joke, that’s how Maun is known the world over. Well, for those who have heard of Maun anyway.). Most visitors wishing to enjoy the beauty and serenity of our nation’s jewel will at some point pass through Maun, be it through flying to the camps in small charter aircraft, or stoping over as part of a driving or Mobile Safari. Because of this, part of the substantial development and growth of the village has been due to tourism, as most camps and lodges that operate in and around the Delta are based in Maun, providing much needed employment for the locals as well.

This is just an introductory post, more to come soon, with the first posts focusing on the history of the village. For now, let me leave you with some scenes from Maun…

Maun, The Place of Reeds

New Mall, the busiest place in Maun