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  • Day10

    In search of the king of the jungle

    July 2, 2017 in Botswana ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    We heard lions last night with their short snoring like sounds, far from the lion roars you were taught as a child! After breakfast, at 7:30, we drove in the direction of the calls. From near our camp, we could see the lions, far across the river that our tents look onto. Sello told us it would take 45 minutes to get there and whether they would be there when we got there was anyone's guess. It was a risk we were willing to take. A lion hunting, we went! 🦁😊 We found 2 adult male lions resting and, soon after we showed up, they got up and walked away. We tracked one of them for awhile but never got as close again.
    After lunch (pasta with beef stroganoff) we had a lovely rest at the tent.
    We left for our afternoon safari after 'tea'. There was a group of vervet monkeys playing around (and in!) the dining area.
    No more big cats for us today, but we did get to see
    many hippos charging into the water, wart hogs, steenbok, dwarf mongoose, water buck, kudu, and multiple male elephants. We tried for a night game drive but it was long, cold (about 50 degrees but colder in moving vehicle) and unsuccessful.
    Now, back at the lodge having dinner (yummy chicken Kiev for me 😊) and will pack up before bed so we will be ready to leave after a quick game drove in the morning.
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    G O

    So amazed at the diversity of what you're seeing!

    Mary Ann Cherenzia

    These photos are AMAZING

    Mary Ann Cherenzia

    IWOW!! Thanks so much for sharing!

    3 more comments
  • Day9


    July 1, 2017 in Botswana ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    I know, not a word, but appropriate none the less! I'm sitting here, having afternoon 'tea' (with delicious lemon glazed cookies!), watching an elephant and listening to grunting hippos from the dining area of our lodge. It is quiet and peaceful and I couldn't be more content!
    We woke at 6am to the delivery of coffee, tea and crackers. Breakfast was at the lodge though Ken and I were late because we thought we had an extra 1/2 hour. Ah well. A quick bite later, we left with Sello for a game drive. We saw an adorable giraffe mom and baby and then joined many other safarians (I know, not a word again...) to hunt for a pack of wild dogs which we found! Very exciting since there are only 500 wild dogs in Botswana. They are skilled hunters with a nearly 100% kill rate when they are tracking prey. And they are ugly!
    We stopped for coffee and biscuits in the bush, aside our safari van, tablecloth and glassware included. Afterwards, we noticed another safari van had fallen into an 'elephant hole' - front left tire in the water and front right tire not even touching the ground! Luckily no one was hurt! Our guide, and another helped use their trucks to pull the other truck out.
    Then we headed back to the lodge for an afternoon 'siesta.' We each had a 30 minute massage included in our stay, which dad opted not to use, but mom, Ken and I each had ours during that time. We all chose a simple head, neck and hand massage. It was awesome! We had a nice buffet lunch of vegetable chili over jasmine rice. Then we relaxed at our tent after lunch and got our own safari viewing from our porch. We saw elephants, hippos and lechwe along with some very pretty birds. Tea time was at 3.
    We left for our 2nd safari of the day at 3:30. Our luck continued! We saw a 2 hour old lechwe who could barely stand, elephants that walked right next to us (and I mean - heart racing close!), African ground hornbills (that apparently don't usually like to be watched), a beautiful saddle-billed stork, a troop of baboons with a tiny baby in tow, a male and female kudu and those tenacious African dogs again.
    We stopped in the bush for a sunset drink and snack and then drove to, what's called the 'Boma'. The Boma is a dinner held twice a week on the Kwhai River lodge property where guests eat outside around a fire and have a buffet meal. Food was decent but not great. The staff sang traditional Botswana songs after dinner. As we were walked back to our rooms (guests must be accompanied by a staff member to walk around at night) we found 2 hippos right behind mom and dad's cabin. Luckily they weren't in the slightest bit interested in us as I understand they are incredibly dangerous if at all provoked.
    Tomorrow, we get to do it all again! 😊
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