Immigration process on the move...Let's see what happens next week...More photos from Marloth Park...


Big Daddy by candlelight after dark.
"Sighting of the Day in the Bush"

We see this same gecko almost every day on this same area of the tree in front of the veranda.  It appears to change colors from time to time
On October 24th we drove to the immigration office in Nelspruit to file our request for a visa extension, having no idea whatsoever what the outcome may be.

Kudus by candlelight by the cement pond, stopping for a drink.
When we left after a second lengthy visit to the facility, we were told to begin checking their website every day once three weeks had passed.  We actually began checking after two weeks figuring it was better to be proactive than wait.

Things do not move quickly here, as is the case for many government facilities all over the world.  One never knows what to expect.  Patience and perseverance are vital in working one's way through any type of governmental agency, as we all know from personal experience.

Giraffe in the neighborhood.  We never tire of seeing these wonderful animals.
Three weeks passed and nothing.  Finally, at the five-week mark, two days ago, we noticed a change in the online information when we entered our ID numbers and surname on the "check your application" page.  

A determined walk along the fence by the Crocodile River.
It appeared our file had been moved to Pretoria, one of the three capital centers in South Africa.  Why does this country have three capital cities?  The answer is here from this site:

South Africa is amongst a minority of countries that do not have a single capital city. Instead, South Africa boasts three capital cities, one for each branch of government. Pretoria is the administrative capital of South Africa. Cape Town is the legislative capital. And Bloemfontein is the judicial capital.

When the Union of South Africa was created, different parties had different views on the appropriate city for the capital. Some expressed concern that allowing a single city to hold all branches of government could lead to too much power for one place. Thus, the developing nation placed the three branches of government in three different capital cities."
The Crocodile River after the sun has set.
This morning when I checked again I found a new vague response, different from that of a few days ago, prompting me to call to determine what the distinct message will be when it's time to drive back to Nelspruit to get the answer from a sealed envelope, opened in front of us, if we have to leave or can stay until February 20, 2019.

It kind of feels like a game show...open the envelope for the answer.  But, who's to say how this particular process was developed and why the necessity of the sealed envelope becomes the means of notification.
A beam of light reflected off the camera at sunset on the river.
If we have to leave, we'll have 10 days to clear out.  If not, we'll go on about our enjoyable lives in Marloth Park for the duration.  We're trying hard not to speculate anything other than a positive outcome.

Should we have to exit, we'll have 10 days to come up with a plan and leave accordingly.  We'll keep all of our readers posted on the outcome as soon as we know.  
Mom and four piglets have been stopping by several times a time.
Most likely, we'll be heading to Nelspruit by next Friday or Monday, December 7th or December 10th based on the fact the rep I spoke to today stated we'll know something in five business days.

We're anxious to get this behind us, one way or another and be able to fully relax during the holidays with many plans on the horizon and during whatever remaining time we may have in South Africa.  
Bushbuck baby, maybe dad and mom often stop at the bottom of the steps for their pellets.  
Last night we had another excellent evening with Rita and Gerhard at Ngwenya.  The sky was clouded so we missed the sunset nor did we see anything of significance on the river.  But, as always the conversation flowed with endless stories the four of us thoroughly enjoy sharing.

Tonight, after being out the last two nights, we're looking forward to an evening on the veranda once again.  We'd had numerous visitors so far today and anticipate it will be no different tonight when they seem to arrive as soon as we set things up. 
Tom took this photo early this morning of a wound on yet another warthog which appears to be healing.  These are sturdy and hardy animals that often survive serious injury without any intervention by humans.
It's bun-less burgers on the braai tonight with homemade ketchup, sliced onions, tomatoes, lettuce, and cheese (for Tom) and of course, crispy bacon to top it off.  A lettuce salad on the side with homemade salad dressing and we're good to go.

Have a great weekend wherever you may be, doing exactly what you love to do!
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Photo from one year ago today, November 30, 2017:

While off on a self-tour in Manta Ecuador, we noticed Panamanian hats were a popular tourist purchase.  For more photos of our day, please click here.

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