Centenary World Cruise Day 98: Walvis Bay

Did you know that Namibia is the home of the oryx? I knew that because when I was growing up, the oryx was endangered, so they shipped a bunch off to the Phoenix Zoo, because Phoenix’s climate is very similar to Namibia’s. The breeding program was so successful that they were eventually able to send some back.

Namibia’s coastline also has some impressive sand dunes. We stopped at a place where one could rent ATVs (although we weren’t there long enough for that), so a bunch of us piled out of the bus and climbed the big sand dune. I felt very accomplished, and also like my choice of footwear (old sneakers) was probably not the wisest.

Next, we went to Moon Valley, which has been featured in dozens of films because it’s such a dramatic landscape. The guide joked that when people first came there, they thought they were on the moon.

Hellscape as far as the eye can see

Now, we’re going to take a tiny detour. My mother likes cabbage. I think it’s hideous, but it’s likely that her love of cabbage comes from the fact that her mother lived through the Depression, and cabbages were (and still are) cheap. Cabbages are easy to grow, so if you had enough dirt to plant something in, you could grow cabbages no matter where you were. My mother always joked that you could grow cabbages on the moon. Back to our story. There’s a little oasis in Moon Valley where a German couple started a little restaurant and sort of all-purpose stopping point. Inside, there’s a tiny museum of the couple’s early days in the Moon Valley, and sure enough, there’s the man proudly showing off the cabbages he’s grown.

This is our last stop in Africa. From here, we’re back to Europe. We’ve got two stops, and then we’re back in New York. How did that happen so fast?

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