Monday, July 31, 2006

Peanut on Safari

It was a sweltering day as we finally turned off the main roads onto a small back road that would lead to the wide, open savannah.

Peanut had traveled happily, and we were all excited as we gathered our tour maps and animal-spotting guides. One last turn brought us to the beginning of our wilderness safari!

We soon spotted the unmistakably long, twisted horns of a herd of antelope-like animals making its way through the tall grasses. So majestic! A wilder young one was racing in circles around the group. Peanut turned to me with her eyes wide open as if to ask "mama! what are they?!".

Our vehicle bumped along the way a bit further before we were approached by more animals. These deer soon had blocked off the path. They circled us and inquisitivity looked in our windows. A bit too much too fast for Peanut. She cried "up, up!" and was soon safe in mama's lap.

We moved along carefully so as not to miss any of the wonderful sights. Halfway into our trip, we began a steep ascent to the hill top from where we could survey the area. From there, it got even more exciting.

In the foothills, we encoutered a corps of giraffes among the tall trees. Just amazing! We didn't need to just peek at them through the sun-roof as one soon lowered his towering neck to greet us through the driver's window.

Nearby, a herd of zebras gathered. As we passed, they lazily moved past our vehicle also pausing to by our windows. We were literally within inches of each other. Peanut happily hissed "zee, zee, zee" as they came by.

In the heat of the day, the cheetahs were taking it easy. Just like Miuku & Mauku do at home. We saw one lolling on its back and another fast asleep against a tree trunk.

We ended our safari by visiting the Lodge and Foothills Tents - once we were able to find them that is. Sheltered away from busy - or any - roadways, the overnight accomodations looked cozy and secluded. They both overlook a popular watering hole visited by many of the parks animals.

What a fantastic day trip! The Fossil Rim wildlife reserve was just 2 hours away from home, yet we felt as if we escaped to a completely different world.

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