African spa in the bush

It was just moments until cocktail hour. My two friends and I fidgeted around the table, waiting on the fourth person in our party to get back from the spa's sauna. Kristen lounged, fanning herself in regal fashion. I smoothed down my dress, trying to make myself presentable.

We couldn't wait any longer. The thought of cocktails was just too tempting, so Mary pronounced cocktail hour officially started ... she popped open the imported can of "fruit cocktail" and sighed at the juicy goodness. After a long, hot day in the African bush, this cocktail hour was worth $3 a can.

Sometimes when you are out in the bush, you do anything you can to make "roughing it" fun. On this trip, fun was the theme as my companions and I turned tough conditions into an African Spa Adventure.

We lounged by the pool ... worked on our tan at the beach ... danced at the local club ... chased ostriches ... bathed in the bath house ... slept under the stars!

Okay -- Actually, it was super hot where we were. There was not much water. We went without electricity, which made it difficult for doing media things. This place was definitely off the beaten path.

Now, here's the translation of our adventures:

• Lounged by the pool - sat next to the hand dug well or the water tank as women gathered water for their daily chores.

• The Beach - the story was set in the desert, so everywhere we went there was sand. In fact, one day we went out walking and got lost in the desert.

• Danced at local club - The women celebrated having water in the tanks. They celebrated by dancing and singing. They grabbed us and pulled us into the celebration.

• Chased ostriches -- this is exactly what it sounds like. As we were driving through the bush, two giant female ostriches ran in front of our truck. We were going about 40 kmph and these females kept running in front of us -- their heads wobbling on that long neck. It was right out of a movie.

• Bath House - We used a pitcher of water for our bucket baths in a tin enclosure. In the late afternoon, this enclosure was known as the spa/sauna because it got so hot inside.

• Stars - nothing beats the stars out in the bush. There are no city lights -- just the dark sky and shiny stars sparkling.

Hanging out in the bush is always fun when your with people who laugh and have a great imagination!