Another wash-basin-filling 06:00 alarm call to get on the road by 07:30. Today we are off to the Moremi Game Reserve for 2 nights at camp #3.
This would be just 135kms which is just as well over the very sandy and bumpy roads beginning with another short game drive but then, since we’re driving out of one wildlife park and into another, we would, wouldn’t we? 🙂
We came across an impressive male Lion which was surrounded by the usual press of jeeps. The local lodge jeeps all have radios and as soon as something interesting is spotted, word goes out and the hoards descend. When we first arrived, Leo was lying in the road but very soon decided enough was enough and retired to the sanctuary of a rocky hill for some peace and quiet.
As we were checking out a water hole, a herd of Elephant decided they would check it out, too. They appeared to be in something of a hurry to get to the water. Then they appeared to be more interested in us than the water. Worrying. Game drives with the luggage trailer in tow because you’re moving house can be interesting. Bibi is quite adept at reversing with the trailer to get out of tight spots. Bibi now displayed his prowess and turned us around so we could make a getaway should it become necessary. Later he thought the matriarch had been concerned about the water quality and was actually just dissuading her herd from drinking.
We didn’t feel at all threatened next when we stopped beside a colony of Dwarf Mongooses. [Apparently Mongeese is an acceptable plural but Mongooses is more prevalent.] They’re captivating little chaps … if you aren’t on their menu.
Our 13:00 lunch stop was out in very open savannah; decidedly big sky country. There was a shimmering heat haze in the distance which produced some interesting optical effects on three Giraffes which very thoughtfully were wandering along the horizon. I thought I’d try something a bit different. It really needs to be big to see the effect so it may or may not work.
Bibi had originally thought we’d make camp at 15:00. That was before another guide told him of a Leopard sighting. Off we set, trailer and all. We drove in and out of bushes, into some dead ends, searching but in vain. More Bibi trailer reversing skills were needed a few times to get us back on track.
We eventually made camp in Moremi at about 16:15. This was a very pleasant camp site with the tents in their usual horseshoe arrangement but this camp came complete with something I think Bibi called “sticky grass”. I’ve found something called Sticky Bristle Grass or Velcro Grass (Setaria verticellata) that may be the culprit. Trainers, their laces, trousers, all got affected by the spikey seeds. You think you’re being careful but look down and your shoes are covered. Try to pick them off and they stick to your skin, too. I found flicking them off my hand with a fingernail quite effective.
We revived ourselves with a very welcome shower and enjoyed an hour or so down time. We hadn’t had much. Some of our ladies were a bit envious of Francine’s Peebols and came up with an inventive solution of their own. Using an empty 5ltr water container, they cut a good sized hole in one side, I think with nail scissors. This made a very effective overnight potty with the spout and screw cap even working as an emptying mechanism in the morning. They even used micropore tape to cover the rough cut edges, which looked decidedly uncomfortable. Cases of lacerated labia would’ve been very nasty. With eight ladies on the trip, empty 5ltr water containers became a tradable commodity and a cottage industry sprang up.
The candles on our dining table were attracting flies which, in turn, were attracting a rather charming little Mantis. It was only 2-3cms long. Needs must – here’s a crappy phone camera picture. I don’t think this will be detailed enough to id but it is cute … if you’re not a fly.