Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Can you see it

I have been back from the Mara for more than a week and it is high time I tell you about the trip rather than just the journey getting there. If you saw on the map on my previous post Fairmont Mara Safari club is right outside of the park. This did not limit our experience one bit. We stayed in large tents situated along the Mara river in which a lot of hippos live. I would sit at our table having lunch and I would watch the hippos in the river. At one point a large bird landed on the back of the hippo, probably thinking it was a rock. The hippo did not like being treated as a rock and "jumped" up it was quite exciting, all while I was enjoying my soup.
The days on the safari are a little structured with two game drives a day: one from 6:30am-8:30am and the other from 3:30-6:30. Getting up early may not sound like a holiday but being able to see the sunrise and watch the active game in the cool morning hours is beautiful and well worth it. The time between game drives is spent at the resort where my parents and I would go for walks to see more hippos, read a book, take a nap and enjoy the wonderful meals prepared for us - yum.
The game drives were of course the highlight of the trip. We had an excellent driver who could spot the wildlife from a kilometer away. At one point we were driving through the bush and he pointed out a lion deep in the bush quite far away. How he saw it while navigating the mud amazed me, practice I guess. We saw all the Big Five (name given to the five animals hardest to shoot when hunting, now refers to the top five animals to see - lion, elephant, cape buffalo, leopard and rhinoceros) except the leopard - although we did see 2 cheetahs which look similar to leopards. Rather than post all my pictueres - you can look at them here on facebook (you should have access even if you are not on facebook). However, here are five of my favourites.
Mom and baby, baby was almost as big as mom

I think giraffes are one of my favorite animals

Those of you who were in Junior high art with me know how much I love sunrises
 The trip back was much less exciting than the trip there, only two hours. Then it was back to work at the hospital which had gotten really busy in my absence, five ventilated patients at one point - usually we max out at three. On Friday I said good-bye to Mom and Dad who are now seeing some more of Kenya before they head home next week sometime. It was great that they could come and see what I do here and meet many of my friends and co-workers here.

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