BootsnAll Travel Network



Stuck in Cape Town

Moms sent an e-mail which kick started me into remembering I haven’t really done anything about the blog for a while. So what have I been up to…

I guess the first place to start is why am I stuck?
Answer. All credit cards and their affiliations suck. Pretty much covers it in my personal opinion. Now, without going into much detail as most is covered in past entries, my doings with credit cards on this trip has been, well, strained. It wasn’t with one card, but it was with all the cards, and even cards that I couldn’t get. Now, it would be one thing if I was struggling with the problem 95% of the world suffers in that they owe money to them, but mine were pretty much all logistical as I owe nothing to those rat bastards.

This time, the problem was not with the actual card, Bank of America had been timely by enrolling me in a new Visa account (even though I didn’t asked to be) just when I was starting to look for one. My prior travels have been with two standard debit cards, with one being sponsored by Visa but not a real credit card. It became a problem when I tried to buy a ticket in Rio, and also when I tried to use it for renting a car in Africa. I knew that my future trips to Central Africa were going to be kind of sketchy and a little but of Visa help might come in handy, so I was searching one when I learned that BofA had already sent me one. Now, BofA is not clear of screwing with me neither. They shut off my account when I got to Africa even though I had called before I had left the VI to let them know I was going to be traveling. Since I was taking too long to get to Africa, they had closed it off from charges in Africa. In South America it was fine, but not in a different continent and not after a year of traveling. I did e-mail them, but all they said was that I would have to call. I still haven’t. My good old Virgin Island bank account still works in every atm, so it hadn’t been necessary to use the other one. Well, back to the problem. I had Travis, my traveling manager (unlucky guy who I volunteered to handle my mail and my only other sole possessions of laptop, digital camera, and suit. I had planned to get it shipped to the hostel in Cape Town while I was on my around Southern Africa trip, but stupid Yahoo jacked with me as well. For some reason my e-mails won’t send when I hit the send button. THey look like they send, but they don’t. I have to use the back button to go back to the e-mail and then send it again for it to take. Unfortuneately I didn’t learn that trip until a week before I was to be back. (I noticed in my sent messages box that there were no traces of any e-mails that I had sent from Africa.) In the mean time, Travis got shipped to Miami and did not have internet access for another week. He finally got my e-mail after I arrived back in Cape Town freaked when there was no card here for me. So after some wrangling, he got it shipped out vis 3-5 business day post. Well, it didn’t arrive. That was back on the 6th. So for the last two weeks I have been sitting here. I did do some inquiries as even my seemingly limitless patience had worn off. The USPS finally sent me a confirmation of what I had thought. It left Miami on the sixth and disappeared.

Subject
—————————————————————
I am checking on my letter that has not arrived yet. Can you provide me
with …

Discussion Thread
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Response (Gary) – 08/18/2006 05:00 AM
Dear STEVEN NAKANO,

Thank you for contacting us about the Express Mail item coming to you
in South Africa.

I apologize that we haven’t received more information on the item,
EQ629900948US, since it left the United States on August 6, 2006 for South
Africa. We will be happy to initiate an investigation for information
on the item. Please contact the sender and they can call us at,
1-800-222-1811. We will need the following information to do so:

The complete GEM label id number.
The inquirer’s name and 10-digit daytime US phone number.
The sender’s information exactly as it was written on the mailing
label.
The recipient’s information exactly as it was written on the mailing
label with their phone number.
Package Details: Documents or Merchandise.

If I can be of assistance to you in the future, please don’t hesitate
to contact me. Thank you for choosing the United States Postal ServiceŽ.

Regards,

Gary

Customer (STEVEN NAKANO) – 08/14/2006 12:59 PM
I am checking on my letter that has not arrived yet. Can you provide
me with what the actual time frame will be for delivery.

As you can see, I posted my inquiry on the 14th, they responded on the 18th and Travis has posted a formal inquiry as of the 19th.

So that is where we are with that. I think I am screwed and have to decide if I should just re-order a new card and try again or say screw it and head off without the safety net. Normally, I wouldn’t think twice, especially if I was doing the Gringo route up the north coast, but I think that the Central area is going to be a little different. I will wait for the maximum of five days for a response and if I don’t hear about something then, I am out of here safety or not.

So with all that free time what have I been doing. Here is my day.

I wake up around 8am as that is when the people gather at the front gate for the tour to Cape Point. They are not too concerned about my sleeping even though the tenters are around the side of the main house. It is then I decide if I go back to sleep or take a shower. Either way, I end up sleeping again whether squeeky clean now or later. Around noon I unzip the tent and wander out. Food is the usual suspect and I head down to the local grocery store for some food. Ramen noodles and a Bee Sting are my only usual purchase with a switch between some sort of meat and pasta. Now a Bee Sting might not be comprehendable to everyone, and since it has become a very important part of my life (my favorite food ever, for now at least.)

A Bee Hive. Take something like a donut, but not a hole less one. More of a bun, but tastes more like a mildly sweetened doughnut. To make it a bit different, they sprinkle tiny bits of chocolate on the tops so they melt and leave little cooked spreckles on the tops. Cut it in half lengthwise. Now pipe an even layer of creme filling around the one side. Then take some vanilla custard and do an equal covering on the other half. Now put them together and you have most of it complete. Cover the top with a good sprinkling of powder sugar, and you have my most favorite food. I eat one a day. It is so good, I wonder if I could brush my teeth with them (its a strange thought, but I think it never the less.) My favorite part of the day is sitting on one of the benches in the park with my Bee Sting. Oh so good.

After lunch, I read. Yup, I am a reader. I read a book every twenty four hours. Usually from noon to noon. Now these are real books. Books that other people read and then put in the tv room for other people to read. They are books mainly for women as women tend to be the bigger readers. They tend to be about other women. I read womens books. A lot of them. I have read around 18 books so far. That makes a total of 21 books in 18 years. Not too bad. If I stayed in Cape Town for around a month, I think I could be at par with a average reader by the end of it. Now, I am such a voracious reader that I browse through book stores, tables of books at the market, the book shelves in the hostel, I exchange books with other readers, and I even visit the library to read a book there.

Subjects that I have read.

Women’s books about women written by women. Not self help books, but stories where the main character is a women.

Murder mysteries although the main character is usually a woman.

Climbing Everest. Six of them.

That would be it. That is my day. Oh yea, I do go by the cheap internet place every once in a while because, well, it is cheap. Compared to the other places I would be crazy not to use it even when I don’t need to.

Other days I climb. Table top and Lions head. Five times in total. Up I walk from the hostel (not with a taxi), I look up, I walk up. I take a look but its still the same so I walk down. Then I read.

So for two weeks that is my life.

Sad but yet good. Can’t be an adventurer 24/7. Stuff is going to happen later and I will rue the day that I ever left Cape Town, so for now I am just going with the flow.



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