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Birds on the run

November 28, 2011

Safari so good, as the Reverend Jeff might expect me to say. It seems we were lucky as the Nairobi National Park had suffered four days of torrential rain before we got there, and it seems the heavens opened again later in the afternoon, but I suspect that as the writing gods knew that one of their peers was in their presence, that was reason enough for us to be greeted by pleasantly cool temperatures and some sunshine during our game drive.

A game drive, now there’s an interesting expression. It could refer to the Wingo driving me home to Valbonne having imbibed well, or it could have either shooting or computer game connotations, but as we are in Africa I suppose it will mean a drive into the bush to seek wild game. And just to please the Reverend who suggested that my readers could expect a series of safari type puns, we we’re lucky that the wind had died down so we were not in a giraffe.

In a morning we managed to see giraffes, buffalo, a rhino and some sleeping lions, impala, baboons, and even some warthogs. There were even some vultures trying to sell us overpriced icons, but that was later.

Dave Maskell, our guide and big cat specialist enlivened the drive with colourful stories of lions and his work with them, including being mauled by one in 2003 leaving him badly injured. I noticed that he carried a gun in a holster and assumed it was protection in case a predator came too close, which in part was true, but more recently it had been used to dispatch two intruders into his house one night. He knew they w’re coming because his dog had been poisoned two days earlier. In Kenya it seems that you can defend your house in any manner you deem fit. Old friend Moya Janko asks that the blog be doubled in length whilst i am in Africa, but she does not realise that I am not on holiday here but working so may not have the time.

My picture today is of some ostriches which crossed the road in front of our game drive vehicle an ancient Mercedes Jeep with an open top and a large shelf to stand on for a better view.

A few birds I found on safari

The flight from Wilson airport to Malindi in the afternoon was punctuated by a stop at Lamu which we were not sure was scheduled, but hey, this is Africa and eventually we arrived in Malindi where we were met by old friend and madman and the inspiration behind Medina Palms, Nigel Rowley. Buying about 50 mango’s on the way for a little over £2 (300 Kenyan shilliings at today’s exchange rate) he then transported us to heaven in the shape of Alhamra, his house which is a showcase for Medina Palms which we visited briefly on the way and of which more later in the week.

Staff took our bags, staff welcomed us with a glass of champagne, staff cooked dinner and served wine, staff did all the clearing away, staff tidied and sprayed our room and secured and set the mosquito nets so vast that frankly they would not fit into any room in my house whilst we had dinner. I have thus deduced that I need staff.

Today’s agenda looks packed. Convene at 11am for a walk along the beach to a restaurant for lunch, a visit to the supermarket to lay in stores of alcohol and back in a tuk tuk (not sure of the spelling her) for a siesta before dinner. Exhausting.

Chris France

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Rev. Jeff permalink
    November 28, 2011 2:01 pm

    “I suppose it will mean a drive into the bush to seek wild game”.

    Hmm….. I first read drive as dive and assumed that all that fresh air had gone to your head and brought out the macho big game hunter in you ! At least the NLD would have had something to smile about !!


  2. Pinman permalink
    November 28, 2011 6:02 pm

    “for a siesta before dinner. Exhausting”

    SO relieved you wrote Siesta and nothing that rhymed with your mode of transport from the supermarket ! It was bad enough reading that the NLD would be amused by your dive into the bush !!


  3. Pinman permalink
    December 3, 2011 2:04 pm

    “I could have said tiffin……”

    Now you are really taking the pith…………………….


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