Late in the evening the animals leave the park in groups to safely rest. Early in the morning as the sun rises they return to the park in endless lines and clouds of dust. It is like the symphony entering the stage and finding their places for the performance.
The guides keep in touch and alert each other to must sees. Our first today was the take down of a young wildebeest by a pair of hyenas. Nature is cruel. The other wildebeest did nothing to protect the young one, they backed off relieved that they were safe. Hyenas are merciless killers, they did not do a quick kill. They ripped at the victims legs while it struggled and screamed. Soon the hyenas sensed danger and backed away as a mother lion and her cubs ran into the scene. The mother lion stood by as one of her seven Cubs rolled the victim over and put it out of it’s misery. All the Cubs moved in and began eating. The mother took the heart and liver and stood guard as the Cubs ate… Soon the scene changed again. A herd of Cape buffalo ran in to scare off the lions. One cub managed to drag away part of the carcass. The hyenas ran in an quickly grabbed what they could. Soon the area regained peace. Later the Hawks and other carnivores will pick up the remains scraps.
Later in the morning we saw two
large, full maned lions.
Today was spectacular!! We began the day at Karen Blixen’s house. After she left Africa, bankrupt, she returned to Denmark and became a famous author and artist. Denmark print a stamp and paper money in her honor. The bought back her African house, land and furniture and gifted it to the Kenyan government to use as a museum. The film Out of Africa was filmed on the property but all the inside shots were done somewhere else.
The next stop was the Elephant Orphanage. Orphan elephants are raised through donations by employees who are with them everyday and sleep with them at night. The mothers have died of disease, by lack of water, by poachers or hunters. Several of the babies were rescued from wells or next to their mother’s bodies. Once a day they are paraded out and bottle fed in front of visitors. They wallow in the red mud, play with a soccer ball and seek attention and affection from the visitors. After about 30 minutes of play time they are paraded back to the farm. I had placed myself so I could photograph them coming in and playing. On the return parade one of them looked in the eye, crossed the rope fence and began rubbing up against me. I was covered in red mud.
The next stop was the giraffe farm. This farm rescues and breeds the Rothchild Giraffes. You can feed the giraffes from your hand or put the feed between you lips and it will kiss you.
Our last stop was lunch at the Blixen coffee farm.
Out In Africa day 1
The flight to Africa was unending. Lucky for me the people I am traveling with suggested that
we come a day early and relax before our tour..
Today we toured Nairobi with a wonderful driver who spent the day taking us shopping. We went to several local markets with native crafts. We also toured the Kazur Bead factory. They hand make beads for several markets, 10,000 Hands and Harrod’s of London are two examples. The employees are hired from the slums (an employee description) and trained to specific jobs. The majority of the employees walk 45 minutes to work for $6 a day. In a country with double digit unemployment , they are grateful for the work. We have noticed that the women do all the heavy work and the majority of men do plenty of observing. The country does have equal rights and they think that has improved the economy.
Prior to the trip we read two books and watched Out of Africa. The two books, Wildflower and
Circling the Sun are historical accounts of the people of the area. For dinner we went to the Norfolk Club and ate in the Cin Cin room. This is the club where the men of Out of Africa gathered and where Beryl Markham was married. It is so much fun to walk among the setting of books you enjoyed.