What a day we’ve had!…Power outage for many hours…Trip to Kruger to entertain us, and it certainly did!…

In this photo, taken at Aamazing River View on Saturday night with friends, I cut off the top of his “tall” fluffy hair, but I like this photo of my guy, Tom.

“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”

Zebras in the garden, including a pregnant mare.  

Today’s post is going to be short and to the point. It’s very late in the afternoon as I type at this moment. We always put our laptops away for the evening while enjoying the wildlife in the garden and dinner on the veranda. Doing a post at night has been a rare occurrence.

Neither of us using any digital equipment until later in the evening when we may watch one episode of a favorite series on my laptop or play with our phones when we go to bed, reading and playing mindless games.

Today’s lion photos were taken at a considerable distance from the fence between Marloth Park and Kruger. Excuse the lack of clarity, please.

This morning shortly after I awakened, while Tom watched last night’s Minnesota Vikings football game, streaming on NFL GamePass, the power went out. This is not unusual in Marloth Park, but generally, it comes back on before dark.

When the power goes out, the Wi-Fi also goes out, and there is no way for me to do the post. I have an offline app I can use, but my almost-four-year-old laptop’s battery won’t last more than 90 minutes without being recharged.

A mom and her playful cub.

If I used all my battery power, we’d be left in total darkness when we come inside from the veranda where we may have spent the evening in the dark with no lights to see the wildlife and no lights to accompany our meal, let alone the need to prepare our dinner without power.

We save my laptop’s battery for that one show we may watch at 2200 hrs (10:00 pm) before we’d go to sleep. On top of that concern is that today, still spring, not summer, the temperature has been 40C (102F). Not having aircon by bedtime could result in a highly uncomfortable night.

Two lovely females.

So, instead of sitting around, frustrated and bored in the awful heat, we jumped into the new not-so-little red car (with excellent aircon) and headed to Kruger. One expects that on such hot days, the wildlife would stay undercover and many do.

But today was exceptional, and we had many excellent sightings we’ll share in tomorrow’s post. This time, we didn’t stop at the Mugg & Bean in Lower Sabie for breakfast since I had to eat something before I took the required six Prednisone tablets before 9:00 am for my outrageous case of pepper tick bites.

Her cub was suckling.

Luckily, the tablets are working, and the situation is resolving nicely. However, I’m plagued with the awful side effect of insomnia. The first night I took one of the Ambien prescribed by Doc Theo to help me sleep at night during the 12 day-course of medication.

But after reading about the dangers of this mind-altering drug, I decided I would not take another.  Instead, I’ve had a fitful night’s sleep without using any sleep aids of any type as I’m drifting in and out every hour or so. Overall, though, I’ve had five to six hours of intermittent sleep and feel fine.

Such adorableness for such fierce animals.

This morning I fell back to sleep for an hour which helped tremendously after Tom watched the game. Not out of bed until 8:00 am, the power went out moments after I got up. I showered and dressed in the dark.  

Tom was frustrated being unable to watch the remainder of the game, and I could not do the post. Thus, we decided, as we’ve done during past power outages, a trip to Kruger was in order.  By 9:00 am, we were on our way, hoping the power would be restored when we returned.

Two females who almost appear to be posing.

It wasn’t back on when we walked in the door five hours later. I was concerned about the food in the refrigerator, not so much the chest freezer. Of course, Louise was all over this situation, and the electrician and Wi-Fi guy was here in no time, and now at 1615 hours (4:15 pm), we’re back in business…lights, aircon, and Wi-Fi. Thanks to Louise, Jacques (the Wi-Fi guy), and Moses (the electrician) for restoring the power in the house.

(As a footnote, the power was out in Marloth Park, but when it’s restored, some properties may need to be attended to to get things back up and running correctly. So was the case here.)

Two females with the persistent cub nipping at mom’s leg.

Soon, it’s time to prep the veranda for the evening’s excitement. Since we returned today, we’ve had tons of visitors, including Wildebeest Willie, Mom Warthog, Four Tiny Babies, several Ms. Bushbucks and Babies, two Mr. Bushbucks, zillions of helmeted guineafowl, and Mr. and Ms. Duiker.  

They were all here at once shortly after we returned from Kruger. They scattered when the service staff came to help but surely will be here again as soon as we set up the veranda.  This happens every night promptly at 1700 hrs (5:00 pm).  Go figure.

See you tomorrow with new and exciting Kruger photos! The Vikings won. Tom is ecstatic.

Have a fantastic evening!

 Photo from one year ago today, November 26, 2017:

A tour boat under tarps at the marina in the Grand Cayman Islands, a port of call off the ship where we met a couple who’d seen our site and are now also traveling the world. For details and their photo, please click here.

Did this really happen in the garden of our bush house?…A somewhat philosophical viewpoint of life in the bush…

The strength and coordination required of a giraffe to bend this low are astounding. We could not believe what we were witnessing.

“Sighting of the Day in the Bush”

Later in the day, close to sunset, a wide array of visitors stopped by to check out the action in our garden.  There was plenty as usual.

After six years of world travel, we often say that nothing surprises us, although many things enlighten and enrich our lives. But, on Friday, we found ourselves reeling in awe and wonder over a scene we never expected to unfold before our eyes, a massive giraffe taking a drink from the tiny cement pond in our garden.

When we spotted these beautiful long legs in the neighbor’s driveway, we practically held our breath waiting to see what would happen.  

We say, “our” garden since over this past over nine months, this garden often filled with wondrous wildlife, has been ours in the fact that we’ve cultivated it with generous offerings, welcoming gentle conversation, and a passion that surely, in essence, has brought us so much joy.

In the past nine and a half months, we’ve only had giraffes come to call a few times around the edges of the property and in the driveway but never specified in the garden where all the others gather when they visit.

And for them, a casual visitor, with endless options of other gardens to visit in this wildlife paradise and wonderland, when they are here, we almost feel as if they belong with us.

The sound of the dry sekelbos branches cracking was earsplitting as she made her way through the dense bush.

Yes, we’ve given them names they only hold while in our garden. Yes, we talked to them in sweet voices with intense eye contact hoping for that moment when they understand our love and desire to bring them a modicum of joy, comfort, and nourishment.

As she approached, we stayed still and quiet.  Giraffes don’t interact with humans. They don’t eat pellets or any other food sources offered by humans.

In many ways, it’s all a mystery. Do they have the mental prowess and ability to connect with us on an emotional level? Or, as some say, they come for the food and, in today’s example, a cooling drink as a respite from the hot and dry weather.

I couldn’t help but zoom in to capture her pretty face.

We choose to believe beyond the obvious. Wildebeest Willie surely likes the pellets, despises the apples, carrots, and pears but brings with him an ability to look deep into my eyes when I speak to him, often not even bothering to eat the pellets until our “conversation” has ended.  

She was obviously on a mission for a drink.

This is the case with many others. I could go on and on about other examples such as this, but I’ve already mentioned them over and over again, ad nauseam. Forgive me for my redundancy. It’s entirely irresistible.

You can describe these “feelings” to those who aren’t here in this paradise-like environment, and they roll their eyes after one of our enthusiastic 60-second recitations about the magic of it all.  We know we need to shut up.  

She was obviously on a mission for a drink.

But the compelling desire to share a description of this place with others who don’t have a clue about it is literally compelling. It’s almost as if we can’t wait to get before an audience of one, 10, or 20 to tell this story, and yet, their interest wafts away in the blink of an eye, albeit a bored and disinterested eye.

It was a long way down to our cement pond.  Good thing, Tom had filled it to the brim earlier in the morning.

We noticed this phenomenon on cruise ships. When seated at a dinner table for 10 or 12 in the main dining room, most often amid total strangers, we experience a tremendous amount of curiosity about our peculiar lifestyle. They want to know the how, the why, the what, and the when of our ongoing homeless life of travel.

Invariably, we can’t resist mentioning Africa, where fewer travelers have been. They’re often astounded by our love of the continent while their own fears and apprehension consume their thoughts.  

She garnered the strength and agility to bend for a drink.

As soon as we mention Marloth Park, their eyes glaze over, and we realize it’s time to change the subject and let someone else share their travel adventure. We acquiesce, and the conversation continues down another path.

We’ve come to realize that only a certain fraction of the population is fascinated with wildlife. Last night, at Jabula at a table of eight with Kathy, Don, Rita and Gerhard, Janet and Steve, and us, we all shared this same passion. It was foolhardy to attempt to steer the conversation in other directions.

We were in awe of her musculature to maintain such a pose, if only for a short time.

Subsequently, our hearts and minds embrace each of their outstanding stories of sightings, albeit eliciting a bit of envy between one another’s sightings, often unlike any of our own.

Last night at dinner, the mention of our little story of the giraffe drinking from the cement pond raised a few eyebrows. It prompted several heartfelt wide grins, leaving us knowing that only these types of special wildlife-adoring people fully understand the depth and meaning of such experiences.

After drinking, she turned around and headed back into the dense sekelbos (sickle bush in English) to return to the parklands and her partner awaiting her at a short distance, as shown in this photo.

For those of you, our readers who have faithfully and diligently followed along on this long path of endless stories about Marloth Park and Kruger National Park for these many months, we commend you. A new direction is yet to come in a mere less than three months. We appreciate you, and we promise you…

Thank you for hanging in there with us while we’ve indulged ourselves in this lifelong passion.  The future holds a plethora of new adventures yet to come.

Be well. Be happy. Live your dream.

Photo from one year ago today, November 25, 2017:
Massive homes on the channel from Fort Lauderdale on our way out to sea for the Panama Canal and South America for the 30-night cruise. For more details, please click here.