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SICKNESS IN THE SERENGETI

RECOVERING AND COMPLETING THE BIG FIVE

sunny 25 °C

We had a disappointing start to the day when Isaac woke at 4 am with the beginning of a traveler's tummy. He was not feeling unwell but it did not seem to be settling very quickly even with Imodium. This is the first time in all our travels that this has really been significant. By the time the gang left he was doing better but we could not risk it given there are little to no bathroom facilities once you depart, what bathrooms there are, are not the best and there is no way you can hop out of a vehicle in the middle of the Serengeti without risking your life. Sadly, we decided it was best to sit this one out.

We made the most of the morning. I did a bunch of laundry which dried on the balcony in 30 minutes (some day on clothes maid) and Isaac caught up on some math. By 10:30 he was completely back to normal and we went out exploring the resort. This was hardly a disappointment as we came across these little weavers who build nests when ready to have babies and this little guy, a rock hyrax.

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At noon I called our guide and asked if he would take us out later and graciously he agreed to come back for us at 2 pm. Are we ever grateful he did and grateful to our gang for being such good sports. The roads are so brutal that having to come back and fetch us was no easy or comfortable task.

The reference to the big five goes back to the African hunting days and the most difficult animals to hunt. For many travelers, no trip is complete without seeing all five and we were certainly no exception. We had already seen the rhino, elephant, buffalo, and the lion so all that was left was the most difficult to spot, the leopard. Lorna and gang had been lucky enough to see him in the morning and having two sightings in one day is unlikely. Our guide did not let us down. Not only did we see him, but we saw him moving about and around his prey that he had dragged up the tree before we arrived. If you check out the photos you can see the impala below him with his legs hanging to the left. We were thrilled!

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The next thrill of the day was migration of the wildebeests. Every year 1.5 wildebeests, accompanied by 200,000 zebras make their both to and from the Serengeti in Tanzania to the Maasi Mara in Kenya some 4000 kms return, following the rains and therefore food and water. We had read before coming that there are specific seasons for this but in fact the migration is a constant process and we witnessed it first hand. We passed a line of wildebeests that extended as far as the eye could see in either direction. They appeared to be walking in pairs, in a straight line for what our guide estimated to be 5km. It is just crazy how instinct guides animals to survive. It is true that the most dramatic time to witness this is when they cross the large rivers into the Mara where they run for fear of the water and the crocs that hide below but I can honestly say this was a spectacular site and a real highlight.

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So what started out to be a slow today turned out to be fabulous. The only thing we missed that the others saw was a lion eating a zebra but Isaac is determined to see that at the next spot. Tomorrow we make another long and bumpy journey to one of the best areas for seeing wildlife, the Ngorongoro crater. It remains to be seen if we will have contact from there.

As always the scenery did not disappoint with brilliant colours and never ending horizons. Those are hippos, not rocks.

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Zebra picture of the day – mommy nursing her calf

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Giraffe of the day – feeding in the tall trees.

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Feeling blessed (and healthy),

Shelley and Isaac

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Posted by curlygirl 09:18 Archived in Tanzania Tagged kids africa tanzania adventures serengeti leopard wildebeests

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Comments

i enjoyed reading. remembering a sun that dries clothes in 30mins and how the home of a weaver can be more exciting than the big five.

by rachel

So glad Issac is feeling better! Worried when I say the title.Your pics are magnificant!!!!!!!!!! Absolutely! Hard to believe you were up close and personal(almost) with these amazing animals.
love to both!
xxx

by cuz

So glad to hear Issac is feeling better :) again I love reading about your travels...it brings such far away places back home! Makes me feel like I was there! Wishing you safe happy travels!

by Janet pittman

This experience is unbelievable - Thanks for sharing it Shelley and Issac - Great photography!

by Agnes

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