Safari is a Swahili word meaning “journey” and it has nothing to do with animals. Someone “on safari” is just away and unobtainable and out of touch. Out of touch in Africa is just what I was for sixteen days in the beginning of September of 2005. We left on this trip September 2, 2005. We were totally unaware of the tragedy Hurricane Katrina would become. While others clung to their TV’s and radios for the latest news of Hurricane Katrina I was totally and completely out of touch.
Although safari only means journey we of course were there to see the animals. We followed the Great Migration as it traveled from Tanzania into Kenya.
All of these photos were taken with an Olympus Stylus Zoom 115 35 mm. point and shoot auto-focus camera and the zoom was limited so most of the time I’m really as close as it looks. It was several years later that I got my first digital camera. This is only a small selection of the 35 rolls of film I shot and yes, it took me six months to be able to pay to have it all processed. Is it any wonder I adore my digital camera?
But let me not get ahead of myself….these charming monkeys dashed into a room when the maid wasn’t looking and we followed them:
A few more of our animal friends:
The photo below taken at Olduvai Gorge cost me more than I was expecting. He demanded three dollars and I gave him five but he wanted two more…so I gave him three but he wouldn’t give the five back. He could count but was unable to read. It was worth the $8.00.
We stayed each night at luxury safari lodges and enjoyed gourmet meals.
We made a detour to the edge of Lake Victoria on our way to the Tanzania/Kenya border
After we went through customs and immigration at the boarder and paid our fees we were on our way to the Masai Mara in Kenya and hit a pretty heavy traffic jam.
Finally the Mara and …..cats….very big cats.
With the Great Migration of wildebeest and zebra in full force we didn’t have to worry about them being hungry. They don’t like the taste of humans anyway.
Another luxury lodge awaited us and a surprise for the evening meal.
The hippos sang us to sleep each night we were there.
Extremely early the next morning we headed out to the launch site for our balloon flight over the Mara.
They filled the trucks as we landed to take us to the spot for our champagne brunch but I was taking photos and lagged behind. It started to rain and our pilot pulled me inside the balloon while we waited for the other truck. I think this was the best shot on the overcast morning.
Then it was off to a Masai village
Early that evening we had another game drive to see more animals and I got some of my favorite pictures.
On to Lake Nakuru
Back to Nairobi and a stop at the Blixen farm
And another adventure before we headed to the airport and our flight to Zanzibar. The Giraffe Center where we met Daisy and her friends.
And we were whisked to the airport for out short flight to Zanzibar. This is where we settled into the lap of luxury….at the lodge in Stone Town.
I want one of these:
We had a morning tour of Old Stone Town and the Doors of Zanzibar
I found what I want. Now how do I get it home.
That afternoon we had a trip to a spice farm. We learned a lot.
And so does chocolate!
Later that evening a group of us went to dinner at a restaurant named for one of Zanzibar’s native sons.
The next day was a free day to do what we wanted so I took advantage of the shuttle to the private beach. If they had warned me it was an hour’s drive each way in a very bumpy truck I would probably have stayed by the pool but it was an interesting experience.
Later that evening those of us who were interested had a private sunset cruise on a dhow. Wow!
M. and I had made a reservation and had a sumptuous dinner by moonlight on the roof of the inn where once again Suleiman took excellent care of us and taught me how to drink Arabic coffee (spiced coffee with a lump of rock sugar held behind my teeth….sipping the coffee through it).
The next morning after my one hour aromatherapy massage (come on, it was only $25, honest) we hung out by the pool waiting for our transport to the airport and back to Nairobi for our farewell dinner and flight home.
At the Carnivore just outside Nairobi you can sample all kinds of wild game, that evening along with chicken, steak, kabobs and a vegetarian selection they served camel, crocodile, ostrich and a couple of other things I can’t remember. I just remember that there was a little white flag by each place and if you didn’t want them to keep refilling your plate you had to surrender by raising the flag.
After dinner it was back into the van and on to the airport for our flight back to London where we all went our separate ways home. We bid farewell to all of our new friends.