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FIAP Congress in Durban 2018

AFTER A SOMEWHAT lengthy trip on my own,

I finally arrived at the hotel in Durban at midnight the next day.

The one important thing to do was to set my alarm, to make sure I was breakfasted and at the first FIAP congress meeting by 8.30am.

Considering I am not a morning person my body was hemorrhaging at the thought ลาวสามัคคี วีไอพี.

I made the deadline and the meeting went well. We broke for lunch and went back into the meeting.

I was honoured to be able to collect The FIAP Honourable Mention Certificate for New Zealand’s 7th placing in the 2018 B&W Biennial.

We had a chance between meetings to go to Tala Game Reserve

and PheZulu Cultural Village where we could get a small taste of wild life.

We took it in turns to be “all aboard the spine readjustment buggy” to view the wildlife, which took an hour.

You probably know that I’m short, but I swear I’m at least one inch shorter now!

You see, my feet didn’t touch the ground when we were sitting in the buggy (no surprise there) and every time we went over a pothole,

and they were numerous, I shot up out of my seat only to land back down with a thud, or worse still,

into the lap of the lady sitting next to me! Just as well there were no lions or elephants at this park or I might have been lunch if I had bounced out.

The cultural village entertained us with some African dancing in costume which was quite entertaining as was

the monkey who decided he would just pop in and help himself to afternoon tea.

 I was enjoying watching his avoidance antics, but the café staff were not “amused”.

However, the trip out to the park showed me some less amusing aspects of Durban. I was saddened to see the hills we passed by covered in squatters’ huts – the other side to life outside our hotel.

It was suggested to us that, despite the lovely beach view from our hotel,

we shouldn’t go over the road to the beach on our own as it was not safe to do so.

This was a shame as I had hoped to get a feel for the local life by visiting some markets, but this was not to be.

 I arrived on the Sunday and left the following Friday, but others stayed on for

the extra oneweek post-congress tour of the Kruger and other big wildlife parks. I bet they got some good wildlife shots.

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