As I left the hostel behind, I swung my pack onto my back for the last time on the road. Keetmanshoop was a small town and acted only as a short rest stop for me. Time marched on and so must I. There was now less than two weeks left of my African Adventure, so every moment was precious. I had no time left to play idle tourist, when there was a finite amount of time left to get back to Cape Town and squeeze in a quick final visit with relatives. It was time to move on.
Sadly, when I evaluated the last of my funds, I found that a train trip back to Cape Town, or even Springbok for that matter (where a cousin lived), would be too dear for my pocketbook. My options were limited. So putting trepidation aside, I decided to try my hand at hitchhiking once more. My spiritual renewal in Swakopmund had refueled my faith in the fates again, so I set my mind to the end goal. I crossed my fingers that I wouldn’t run into any rides reminiscent of my last hitchhiking fiasco. Or worse, for that matter.
So with a prayer to my angel wing-man, I turned from the train station and headed out to the highway. I couldn’t help but pull out the camera to take a quick snap of my beat-up, dusty old pack that had seen thousands of miles pass under it. There wasn't much left of it or in it, besides the thin orange and brown polyester sleeping bag and an assortment of even thinner clothes. It was hard to believe that I would be hanging it up soon. Even harder to think about leaving this beautiful land, that I still felt like I was only just beginning to know. When I thought of the family and friends that I would soon see, I was spurred on to action though. I slid my camera back into my pack, just as a big rig approached. I stuck out my thumb and the truck slowed to a stop. This was it, I thought to myself, as I swung up into the cab.
And as the truck lumbered back up to speed, I met Mango.