When I went outside this morning the first thing I noticed was that it smells just like a zoo. The Masai’s herds live right where they live. There are goats and sheep and cows everywhere!
Down the hill from Shane and Terry’s house we drove in a safari jeep. Our driver is Ronald. He’s not very talkative and when he does talk it’s pretty hard to understand him. He drove us to the iron gate of the Masai Mara Animal Reserve where we were inundated with amazingly aggressive Masai women all holding up beaded and wooden things and saying, “Miss, Miss! Look! Look at this!” If you look, they’ll hook you! If they see you’re interested they will say, “How much will you pay?” Or they’ll offer all the bracelets, “Ten of these for 400 KSch!”
Anyway, we escaped into the Masai Mara and immediately saw zebra with their amazing stripes. Are they white with black stripes, or black with white stripes? We saw many cute Thompson gazelles with their tan coats and black slash across their sides. We saw giant giraffes with no bars around them. They stop chewing and stand as still as statues when they hear us drive by. We take pictures and move along.
We saw two female elephants with three calves. They came within 75 feet of our jeep but passed us by as they walked along yanking up tuffs of grass with their trunks and stuffing them into their mouths. You could hear the grass as it was being pulled up – they were that close.
We saw lots of dark gray warthogs and a couple of red ones. We saw beautiful orange impalas and finally Ronald found us two male lions laying in the shade of low bushes. They were amazing! They were so unconcerned about us as we drove our jeep within 20 feet of them that they yawned in boredom. We however, were thrilled!
I never knew how GREAT 4-wheel drive is, but we went through mud holes that I never knew was possible. We bounced and bucked like a wild bronco at times. Ronald took us off-road at times looking for those lions. After a couple of hours the jeep stalled and Ronald had to stop and put the can of fuel in the jeep. While we were waiting I was so amazed at how quiet everything is. There is not even the slightest hint of that continual freeway hum we’re all so used to hearing. What would it be like to camp overnight if he can’t get this thing started back up? The air is dry and cool unless you sit in the sun – then you realize how hot it is on the equator.
We left after seeing four more giraffe, gorgeous zebras a mother warthog running away from us with her tail sticking straight up and followed by six tiny warthogs with their tails all up. Now we must prepare for the meeting tonight…