She was nervous about travelling all that way on her own and we were keeping in touch to offer advice and encouragement throughout her first solo intercontinental journey, partly for her sake, but also to put our own parental concerns to rest.
What a difference a few months make. Having fended for herself, Darling Daughter is now quite happy to venture forth on her adventures without too much consultation with mum and dad.
She left 33 South Backpackers on Friday, the place she had called home since November, and is now into the first 24 hours of a grand tour of southern Africa.
She is currently heading north towards the Orange River before crossing into Namibia and the remote Namaqualand. I won’t detail her entire journey, but the trek will take in the Kokerboom Forest, Namib-Naukluft National Park, spending time with the namadic Himba people and crossing the open plains of Etosha before entering Botswana.
Next will be a few days on the Okavango Delta and on to Gweta to sleep among the majestic Boabab trees. Then it’s the Chobe National Park before reaching the finishing line in Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls.
Except she isn’t finishing there, but striking out on her own into Zambia to meet a friend for his birthday. Bas is Dutch and works as a warden on a game reserve — a good bloke and great cook.
Then DD is travelling south through Mozambique to meet some other friends in Maputo then flying back to Cape Town for a few days before her return flight to the UK.
That’s one heck of a trip for someone who was once nervous about missing a connecting flight at Heathrow and certainly not one that I would have even considered at the same age.
But before she left Cape Town, she found time to co-star in a short video. Can you spot which is her? The clue is she is the smallest.