Fun night in the bush!…Memories of years past…

Frank, who prefers to walk and run, flew up to the bushbaby house and posed for this photo.

Last night, we didn’t take a single photo. Once we arrived at Khaya Umdani, a beautiful holiday home owned by Louise and Danie, we were caught up in the loveliness of the evening, the hosts, the Christmas decorations, the food, and the beauty and ambiance of a house we’d stayed in for a few weeks back in 2014.

Returning to Khaya Umdani brought memories of the particular time we spent in that gorgeous house far beyond our budget. The rent is at least three times more than we pay at this house and more suited to large groups with six bedrooms and five bathrooms. It is a stunning house, suitable for ten adults and two children.

It was fun to see a few mongoose babies.

If you are interested in coming to Marloth Park with friends or family, this house is ideal. If the cost were divided among three, four, or five couples, the cost would be a bargain. To view this listing and its stunning features in many photos, see this link and contact Louise for more information at

As the guests arrived, almost all of whom we already knew and thoroughly enjoyed at other social events, an intimate group of their closest friends, we felt honored to be included in this little party of 13. Everyone had brought tasty treats, and of course, Louise and Danie made some fantastic meaty items on the braai, ready to be served when we arrived.

Could One Tusk be our replacement for Tiny, also gentle and friendly?

At that gathering, Flo and JiJi invited all of us to their upcoming New Year’s Eve party, which we’d attended the last time we were here on New Year’s Eve in 2018. We are thrilled to be included. We have parties to attend on both Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve, rounding out the holiday season.

We’ll spend Tom’s birthday on December 23rd at Jabula without any commotion due to its proximity to Christmas when everyone is otherwise preoccupied with Christmas festivities. We’ll make his 70th birthday in 2022 more festive when we return to Cape Town, South Africa, earlier in the month by cruise and make our way to Marloth Park for the holidays and a few following months.

One Tusk never minds sharing pellets with piglets and their mom.

Of course, all of the cruises we have booked into 2022 could easily be canceled over the next several months. The first one we expect to be canceled is the one for which we’ll make the final payment on Christmas Day, two weeks from today. If that payment is accepted, it doesn’t confirm that the cruise will set sail on April 8, 2022, because it is a transatlantic cruise ending in Southampton, England.

England has several entry restrictions as outlined here at this site. But, a lot can change in the next four months, so, once again, we’ll play it by ear. We’ll need to arrive in the US 14 days before the cruise to ensure we can get on the cruise on April 8th. Otherwise, they won’t accept us for boarding the ship in Fort Lauderdale, coming directly from South Africa. We can’t take that chance.

Big Daddy maneuvered through the dense bush to make his way to our garden.

Today, I decided to make Tom a special treat for his birthday. Although not low carb, he deserves a treat, so I will make him his favorite dessert, German Chocolate Cake, from scratch. South Africa doesn’t carry typical cake mixes. In our old lives, I’d use a Pillsbury German Chocolate cake mix for this particular cake and make the frosting from scratch.

This year, I’ll make the entire cake from scratch and plan to do so early in the morning on his birthday. That night, when we return from dinner at Jabula, he can have a piece of his cake. Of course, I don’t eat any of it, but I will enjoy seeing him savor his favorite treat. It’s the least I can do for my guy on his 69th birthday!

Kudus are used to eating from the trees, not bending down to eat pellets.

Most likely, for the holiday, I will make a special low-carb coffee cake for me and another of the same for Louise and Danie, who also eat as I do. Once done, I will post both recipes.

Tonight, we’re off to Jabula for dinner and more fun socialization. No doubt, we’ll have another fantastic evening.

Be well.

Photo from one year ago today, December 11, 2020:

This photo was posted one year ago while in lockdown in a hotel in Mumbai, India, on day #263. This was Cupid with a heart-shaped marking on her throat. She particularly loved the lucerne. For more photos, please click here.

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