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African Diary: The Day-by-Day Account of an Incredible Adventure
African Diary
by Naka Pillman


 
Price: $7.95

Product Code: 978-0-937552-31-5
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African Diary is the day-by-day account of an incredible 6,000-mile trip from Johannesburg to Cairo, an ill-fitted safari Naka Pillman took with her eleven-year-old daughter in 1963.

Having been raised by a Sangoma (witchdoctor) who taught her the realities and mysteries of the bush, Naka had always longed to see more of her home continent. But she knew that if she was to be allowed to travel through the newly emerging African nations, she would have to do it soon.

A picture of Brian (the trip's leader) and an article about his upcoming safari enticed her to react immediately in order to join his group on an overland trip through the continent. Leaving two teenage boys at home with her husband, she and her daughter Rita-Louise embarked on the adventure of a lifetime. Shortly into the trip, however, it became apparent that the traveling conditions were not as advertised. The vehicles that transported the tour group were constantly breaking down, causing great danger (no brakes in steep terrain) and difficulties (people being forced to double-up and ride on top). With the exception of his personal traveling companion, Ann, and the young British girls, Brian showed little concern for the safety or well-being of the remaining members of the group.

Through all the difficulties however, the spectacular beauty and excitement of Africa are captured in the author's daily dairy entries. She vividly describes the magnificent splendor of Victoria Falls, Mt. Kilimanjaro, and the Sudd of the White Nile, and the exhilaration of being in the presence of great herds of migrating animals on the Serengeti Plains.

But the prevailing theme of this journey is survival. With the tour in chaos, Naka Pillman and her daughter face a variety of life-threatening situations. The dangers are as close as the elephant prints that she awakens to find near their tent, and as insidious as a white slavery plot that threatens her daughter and the other young women of the group. Mrs. Pillman's diary, compiled over the ten weeks of the trip, is a compelling account of how she applied the limits of her wits and instincts to survive the dangerous situations that threatened her and her daughter.

African Diary is a real page turner.


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