A trip that almost never happened, but eventually did. Away from the deadline blues and deep in the Batswapong sacred gorges, Dikgang Publishing Company (DPC) journalists (publishers of Mmegi and The Monitor newspapers) took time off for a much-needed retreat at the serene Goo-Moremi Gorge and Resort.
Being the adventurer and lover of nice things in the country’s busiest newsroom, Yours Truly had to lead the journey to the mystical Goo-Moremi and it had a bumpy start.
At the scheduled time of departure, inconveniently there was no transport to ferry us to Goo-Moremi as the booked bus broke down before it even started moving.
Faced with another possible postponement (the last time was due to bad weather particularly at Goo-Moremi), the spiritual folktales of Goo-Moremi Gods, of how Badimo could stop anyone from accessing the place if they so wished, began to haunt the trip planner.
But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise because we got an even better bus, mechanically fit for the journey and we hit the A1 Road, albeit late.
As we got off from the A1 Road at Dikabeya junction, everyone was in high spirits. The conversations in the bus turned into a song, literally.
That was after the newsroom ‘slay queens’ business reporter, (the ever dolly-like) Pauline Dikuelo and crime reporter, Pini Bothoko jumped onto the support vehicle driven by DPC commercial manager, Lone Koosenye with IT manager, Mpho Mogotsi.
In the bus, Mqondisi Dube and his sport desk, including the reserved Boitumelo Khutsafalo and our tidy photographer (the newsroom hunk) Kennedy Ramokone, reminisced about football fans and led us with songs they usually hear inside packed stadia when they are covering matches.
Our youthful lifestyle reporter, Mompati Tlhankane, also known as Spira in the newsroom, whom we picked from the road straight from a Kasane assignment, put some uncensored mix in the songs at times giving us eargasms, but other times a little too explicit.
Innocent Selatlhwa, also known as The Jailbird from his infamous two false arrests, proved that he is a competent Motswako lyricist who could ‘murder’ any chance rapper out there.
The news and political desk reporters, led by Tsaone Batsimanebotlhe’s high-pitched voice and Goitsemodimo Kaelo’s energy, brought us the medley of political songs and those struggle chants from Workers’ Union meetings.
The singing got so infectious that everyone caught themselves singing along.
Even those that attempted to be reserved and sober like Nnasaretha Kgamanyane, newsroom granny Pamela Dube Kelepang, Mpho Mokwape fresh from her Chinese sojourn, graphic designer Oman Nkonyane and editors Maureen Odubeng and the commander himself Oarabile Mosikare, also known as CIC, were at some point dancing, lost
The trip DJ, photographer Moreri Sejakgomo also known as Wagamma, who gave us mostly the blues (the good kind), grown-up music was forced to shut the radio down because the singing was enough entertainment.
At Goo-Moremi we found the Francistown team, Ryder Gabathuse, Chakalisa 'Chaks' Dube, Lebogang 'Tsoo' Mosikare (younger brother to Oarabile), and photographer Keoagile 'Fats' Bonang, together with Koketso Kgoboge based in Palapye already camped at Mantsi Campsite with a big campfire.
The Ghetto team was also with Calistus Kolatsho also known as The Big Daddy, Chanoga’s Finest. Our beautiful accountant, Boitumelo Ndwapi, often called Goromente had also arrived. Around the campfire at Mantsi Campsite the scribes just shot the breeze under the starry night.
The following day, the team took short morning walks from the Campsite to the restaurant through the Gorge Trail, but it turned out to be little bit too much for our Odubeng. The supposedly ‘short walk’ got the better of the 'Boss Lady', as she is called in the newsroom, that she felt abused so early in the morning.
After breakfast, scribes gathered inside the conference hall for a closed meeting.
The hiking into the Gorges got underway after lunch. Orelebile Tiroyamodimo who punctuated his every sentence with adverb 'so' like he was on a Solfège was our lead guide. Tiroyamodimo led the whole team to the third pool in good time.
From the gorge hiking, the famous Goo-Moremi pool at the restaurant, with its crystal clear waters and expansive grand views of Tswapong hills, was too inviting and the boys dipped in. Sejakgomo had brought an eye-catching swimsuit for divers, and was looking (not swimming) like a scuba diver in a small pool.
At dusk after the boys had had enough of playing in the water (to call it swimming will be a gross misrepresentation), the women eventually arrived. When they dropped their towels to reveal their colourful bikinis, the boys jumped back in the water. Mokwape was debuting her Chinese swimwear and she was understandably first lady to jump in before others followed.
The pool was lively once again and colourful too.The famous Goo-Moremi pool Instagram poses were made and it was so refreshing that before we even left, many promised to come back.
To visit Goo-Moremi Gorge and Resort
Call: +267 71247225
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