Posted by Emily Block | 0 comments

Safari (Day 2, Part 2)

In the interest of time, I'm going to just caption the pictures for this entry.

Second breakfast was the best meal of the day.  The croissants were better than ones in France, the bacon was thick sliced and delicious, the sautéed mushrooms were perfect, and there was even pineapple smoothies to drink.  I hardly ever eat a whole meal at a time, but for second breakfast, I went back for seconds!

I decided to go on two extra excursions while at the lodge.  The first one was an elephant interaction!  I was the only one from my camp going, so I got a whole safari car to myself!

And I saw elephants!  Most of them were playing in the water or eating grass.  

I got to get up close and personal with them as I fed and pet them.  Their skin feels so strange!  It's like a really squishy rock with big bristly hairs covering it.  

My what big teeth you have...
An interesting note is that two of the elephants started getting a bit frisky and we had to run and leap into the jeeps to avoid being trampled!  It was really scary and exciting!  Everything was fine though.  The trainers broke them up and poor Mr. Elephant bull had to do without some lovin' for now.  

The second excursion I went on that afternoon was to a endangered species center.  Their original, and main goal is to rescue and breed cheetahs, but they also take in all kinds of endangered animals.  This zebra came to them as a baby who was trapped on a fence.  

It was raised by sheep, so it thinks it is one!  Sheep are notoriously good at raising other species because they are too dumb to realize it's not their own kid.  

And cheetahs!  This one was allowed out and about to check out the males and pick one to breed with.

And what is better than a cheetah, a few feet away?  A bunch of baby cheetahs a few feet away!  They were purring and very playful.  (Cheetahs are the largest cat that purrs, by the way.)  And what is better than a bunch of baby cheetahs a few feet away?  Nothing.  How could you even think there is anything better than that?  :0P

There were also some wild dogs.  These poor things stink to high heaven because they all pee on each other.  The lower one is in the social order, the more it get's peed on. And I thought high school was rough!

It may be wild, but it's still a dog.

On our way back, the baby cheetahs wanted to play so they sat under the vehicles wheels until the guide gave them some attention.  haha

These unfortunate looking birds are really cool!  They are humungous and very smart.  When the guide called one's name, it came running!  These birds take a long time (7-9 years!) to mature and start mating.  When they do mate, they mate for life.  Awwwwe!

   This tested my gag reflex for sure.  Nothing is wasted at the center, so all the bones are thrown to the "vulture restaurant" when the animals are done with them.  And let me tell you it did not smell good.

The birds were happy though.

On the afternoon game drive, I decided to give in and wear my neck brace.  All of the bouncing was getting to be very hard on my joints, especially my back and neck.  I may look a bit silly, but I was much more comfortable!

The lioness makes a reappearance!  

She came right up to our car!

And was scouting out something she must have seen off the road.

Just to show how close we were.
Also, we made friends with a giraffe.  

Yes, this is our guide holding elephant poo.  As one of his jokes, he told us that to tell if it was male or female elephant poop, you had to taste it.  And with that he popped some into his mouth.  Yuck!  He said he was just kidding about the male female thing, but that it was perfectly safe to eat the poo of herbivores.  Apparently it's only the meat eaters that have dangerous poo.  He asked if anyone wanted to try it.  Only two of us were brave enough and I am proud/ashamed to say that I was one of them.  It really didn't taste bad at all though.  It tasted just like hay which is kind of a pleasant taste.  Now kindly forget I ever mentioned that I ate elephant poo.

Next we came across a herd of wild elephants.  They are SO much fun to watch.  They are very active.

This was an albino elephant who was a few years old.  Still a kid.

And a nursing young elephant.

This is just about the happiest elephant in the world because it has a stick.  I guess that once one elephant starts playing around with a branch, it becomes the most sought after commodity in Africa even though there are hundreds of ones just like it.  Siblings are the same everywhere.

We also got half-heartedly charged by one of the elephants.  Someone in the car stood up and it freaked the elephant out so it started lunging at us.  It wasn't a big deal though because we got out of there in plenty of time.  The guide was pretty pissed at the kid though.  

We were really lucky to see this baby elephant that was born only a few days ago!  It was still very wobbly which made it all the more endearing.

We finally spotted a male lion!  This was the daddy to the cubs we saw earlier.  They were all hanging out on the road, playing and napping.


And a jackal.  It stared us down like it knew it ruled the underworld.  


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