9/29/09: Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya
Knowing you like we think we do, there’s only so many lion pictures that you can enjoy on this blog before you get tired of them.
There, I’d say you’re more than tired of them now (and we still have our Serengeti game drive to come!).
Honestly though, that was easily the highlight of the day. Once we left the reserve, it was simply a long, hot, bumpy drive back to Nairobi for a relaxing, big-cat-less evening at camp.
Since we have some extra time and I don’t have a clue what to do with it, I’ll provide a quick update on where my head is at regarding the remainder of our world trip. First, Zhou and I both have become very interested in extending our overland tour all the way to Cape Town, South Africa. We have done the math and figured out it would cost us an extra $180/day for the extra 13 days, which would put us way behind budget just two months into our trip, but we’ve decided it would definitely be worth it. For those of you planning a tour through Africa and a bit nervous about pulling the trigger on something as long as 45 days, don’t be. Instead, go find the longest tour you can afford, then book it immediately. I can’t begin to tell you how much fun Zhou and I have been having (although I suppose our blog posts have clued you in on that). There are so many different things to see and do on this continent – 45 days is not nearly enough. I know we’re not even three weeks into our trip, but it’s become clear that we need more time. Plus, our tour group is great, our guides are great, the air is clean, and the truck has even become a sort of home to us.
Anyway, our round-the-world ticket will probably make this African tour extension impossible (there are two flights we’d need to change, and both are fairly hard to get), but we will be looking into it and will get back to you with our final verdict.
On a related note, we are both very glad that we chose to do a group tour at the start of our trip. This has given us an opportunity to adjust to life on the road while not worrying about what our next steps are or if our luggage is safe (we are able to leave the valuables in a locked locker in a locked truck). Most importantly though, we have been able to talk to other world travelers about their experiences. I’m sure we were a bit naïve in planning a trip of this length (even though Zhou did a fantastic job planning), thus it has been very helpful to be around other travelers every day and gain their insight and advice. I actually now feel ready to conquer Everest (base camp) in Nepal, then tour Southeast Asia, etc. On top of that, we have been offered many places to stay on our journey, hopefully making our budget easier to hit.
It’s amazing how quickly a short post about nothing can turn into a long soliloquy about what’s on my mind. Just be happy that I didn’t post about everything on my mind (how these dusty environments lend themselves to more boogers, why not showering every day is good for ensuring a long, healthy marriage, etc.).
Picture of the Day: Why should the hyenas and jackals and vultures and beetles and cheetahs and storks and snakes and other bugs and birds be the only ones who get to enjoy the remains of animal carcasses? And, wait, why are they letting us out of the vehicle when there’s a relatively fresh animal carcass on the ground?