The old man is snoring . . .

Wow!! Experiencing my first rainfall here. The birds are so happy they’re raucous and giddy. As is Derrick, the chap I went lion monitoring with this morning. It sort of drizzled heavily all morning, and he kept saying his little prayer “Please, let the rain get as far as my goats” and as it kept drizzling, he got happier and happier. Then just as we were coming back to camp, it dumped!

You’ve heard all those stories about tropical downpours – well, I’m here to tell you they’re true. It just thundered down. It has stopped a couple times, but keeps starting up again, much to the delight of the local populace and of a certain Canadian tourist who has been quite enervated by the relentless heat.

Downside is, I think I was supposed to get taken to Mozambique this weekend, so that’ll probably be off – and the spiders and snakes will probably *all* wake up now. Oh well, you win a few and lose a few. I was quite glad to have lost out on the last trip to Mozambique, as the park mechanic had been there with his friend and was drafted to bring them back. He was apparently inebriated almost to horizontal when he got behind the wheel, and he and his friend continued drinking all the way back. And the girls all had to cram themselves (4 of them) into the back seat, with 6 people’s weekend luggage on top of them. So maybe it’s not too much of a loss, considering.

I SAW A RHINO THIS MORNING!! No pictures though, he hid too fast. But what an impressive and beautiful beast he was. Huge, black, shiny with the rain, and looking as solid as a slab of marble. Yet he moved so quickly and quietly – almost delicate in his movements. I do hear though, that ‘delicate’ is not the word you’d use to describe their movements if they decide to charge!!

Finally saw a Hadeda. I’ve heard them every day I’ve been here, but failed to see any until today. There again, they moved quickly. I did get a photo, but they’d turned enough so that their long downcurved beaks aren’t visible. Sorry! But this pic is for you, MT.

Also saw some zebra, some giraffes, some blue wildebeeste, and a baby duiker who was left to fend for itself in the grass by its parents when we chugged up. I’m going to love this week, as I plan to do the wildlife things all week.

Rain on the savannah

Two young studs and an old guy, enjoying the rain

Poor abandoned baby

Hadeda - the bird that’s afraid of heights

You want me to climb WHAT?? AND bring the antenna and GPS locator??

Mom and baby, looking decidely damp

Herd of Blue Wildebeeste

Shy Bambi Reedbuck

Blessed rain

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6 Comments »

  1. Teana said

    Good Morning. I can almost hear the rain and the singing creatures there. At least if you are really deperate you can have a spidy free shower.
    Love the pictures and hope you get the most out of your time there.
    Transportation sounds like fun??? Lord help me I think I would have chosen to walk 100 miles first critters or not.But what the hey I guess it was to say the least an interesting ride home. Guess I am get kicked off here again. Have a great one hugs Teana

    ** Well, perhaps I have on odd sense of adventure, but I sure enjoyed it. Still trying to find out who the band was. And maybe the critters wouldn’t have prevented your walk home, but the heat might have . . . I’ll let you stay this time, but be careful!!
    ~m

  2. Teana said

    I meant the girls trip home from Mozambique, not your trip for shopping LOL
    A drunk driver may be fun if you are too drunk to care but not if you are sober. Hope you are getting some blessed sleep. AWOY Teana {angels watch over you}

    ** AHHHH!! I wondered ’bout that – I did. Dumb of me not to see the obvious, but there you go. And as for being too drunk to care – I’ve only been in that position once, and it was truly ‘too sick to care’. Cured me for good. Before that and after that, ever only one or two drinks and can’t even stand to be around people who are drinking. Legacy of working in a bar at a very young age and watching people make idiots of themselves.
    And besides, I can make a complete fool of myself while I’m completely sober – why would I look for help in that direction??

  3. Teana said

    We have that in common. Been too sick and drunk a couple of times myslef but I too worked in a lot of bars when I was younger and people really are something else when they are drinking.
    Teana

  4. Davina and Kate said

    Hi Granny M!

    We saw the picture of the spider – PLEASE don’t bring it home! Dad says he wants a hyena pup instead and we think that would be cool.

    We miss you and we like your pictures.

    Sounds like you’re having a great time. Can’t wait to see lion pics and the videos and other pics you have when you get home.

    Love you!

    Kate and Davina

    *** Dear Cheshire Cat and Princess: It’s really nice to hear from you both. I don’t want to bring any spiders home either. Tell Daddy that hyena pups are very smelly and would not be nice to have in the house. They’re still smelly even after you bath them. It will be really nice to see you when I get home, and we can sit down and look at all my videos too. There are lots of children dancing and singing, that the princess will especially like. And CC, in case you were wondering, proper paragraph structure will happen some day when I’m not so tired. Too beat right now to hit the return key more than I have to
    ttyl, and thanks for writing . . .
    Granny M

  5. MT said

    Sanibonani, grannym!

    Hope you are somewhere ‘different’ this weekend – if not in Moz. Sounds like you have given your all to your classes, and now it is time to have a little ‘me’ time before you have to leave that region. For a first-timer to S.A., you sure have experienced a lot – not what the typical tourist would have in her diary. Maybe Durban and CapeTown will be boring after the bush (but I think not).

    Can picture the impromptu good-bye assembly at your school. Those kids will sing at the drop of a hat. Did you bawl through the entire programme? The essay contest is a great idea and the prize wonderful. Too bad the whole school could not experience the park – so much of their life, so near to their homes, but so unattainable because of lack of funds. At home, we’d make a few phonecalls, get a sponsor or two, organize buses, collect signed permission slips, and we’d be off on a field trip. Probably a lot of these kids do not even HAVE a parent to sign a permission sheet. Anyway, hope you are there to see the results and to go on the tour so that you can see the joy on the winners’ faces.

    Thanks for thinking of me when you saw those elusive hadedas. (You’ll see tons in Durban. They roam the lawns, like our starlings, looking for grubs, etc.) They look rather bland birds till you see one close up and notice the mother-of-pearl iridescence of their feathers.

    Glad you experienced the joys of the first rains. I remember how my uncle, a farmer in KZN, would be on the phone, calling all the neighbouring farms to see how many ‘points’ of precipitation each received as the winter ended and spring began. The amounts would differ greatly because of the topography of the land, but when good rains finally came, the farmers would all go into town for a pub lunch to celebrate. Read in the BBC Online that very heavy rains have hit Uganda and Kenya and other countries to your north, causing killer floods. That’s Africa – either too much or too little.

    Are you bringing some African music home with you? You’ll find some good music stores in the malls when you get farther south. Yesterday as I was sewing I listened to Johnny Clegg (from his early days with Jaluka and/or Savuka), also Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Got both these CDs here in Canada, but if you want something less mainstream, better pick it up there.

    Gotta go – supper is ready. Actually cooked as the high today was only 14C. Feels good to have the oven on. Warmer weather coming back later next week. Enjoy your last few days in the bundu! Hope you see your rhinos and hippos! Stay safe. MT

    *** I can’t wait for you to see the video I got of the school dances. So much more moving than a professional tourist entertainment group.
    And as for music, I’ve been collecting African music for a couple decades or more. All was lost about 8 yrs ago when I got robbed – everything in my house taken except the heavy furniture – shoes, cleaning supplies – everything!!
    But I have recouped a lot. I buy regularly from both oneworld.co.za and from calabash music on-line. Trying to find out who that maskanda group was, and will get some more before I leave. Check out a group called Harris Tweed on-line, and listen to Cherilynn’s song Ode to Confusion.
    Didn’t get to Moz, but more on that in the blog, when I get around to writing it – mucho confusion here this weekend – I’ve been abandoned and no one seems to realise it.

  6. Kate said

    We’re hearing of massive flooding, etc, and hope that you and your area are safe.

    Love you,
    Kate
    **Hiya CC:
    Yes, there has been some extreme storm activity. The worst is some way north, but we’ve had some very high winds and I have sand and dust in every possible (public) orifice.
    Maybe it’ll blow all the spiders away?? You think?
    Love ya back,
    ~granny m

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