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Okavango Delta, Botswana – pictures

Posted on: June 21, 2012

I’m tired of complaining about boys and life, so I thought I’d share some pictures of my very first safari ever. I was lucky enough, upon landing in Africa for the first time, for my coworker to say:  “I don’t need you at work just yet – go on safari first.” She (who is reading this) really helped me fall in love with the continent (at least the southern part), and we’ve had MANY adventures together.  🙂

I went to the Delta and stayed at Oddballs Camp in the Moremi Game Reserve – and if I knew then what I know about safaris and animals, I may have never gone. Ignorance is bliss!  I also didn’t know how lucky I was to be going to this amazingly beautiful place… I’d never heard of it before, but know now that it is one of the top and rare safari destinations in the world.  I hope you like these… the camera was just a Nikon Coolpix. Nothing special… I’ve had camera envy since then. I should’ve invested, but I never in my wildest dreams thought I’d travel the way I do. I know I’m lucky, even though I may bitch about it sometimes.

Anyway, enjoy the pics 🙂

The delta from the puddle jumper plane we were in – flew low enough to see elephants and giraffes from the air

The mokoros – wood canoes that take you through the vast water system. Hands and feet inside at all times, unless you want a croc to take you under….

The view from the mokoro – it’s beautiful, but deadly. Right below are hippos, snakes, crocs… if you get flipped, say goodbye.

A journey of giraffes 🙂 (Which leads me to my friend’s favorite joke: If a group of giraffes is called a journey, what’s a group of buffalo? …. an REO Speedwagon. HA HA HA. 80s/safari humor, all at once)

 

Peek-a-boo!

This poor buffalo had died the year before – our guide had seen the death/kill.

My version of Monet’s Water Lilies

A smaller animal, but just as pretty

We were REALLY close to these zebras. Know why they didn’t run? Because there were LIONS around that morning. And we’re traipsing through the bush like they won’t eat us. We got off the canoe, stepped on shore, and heard the lions roar. I almost peed my pants… we were able to get so close to the prey animals, because if they ran, the lions would’ve chased them. I was really scared that morning… the guide made SO much fun of me for being so worried*, but holy crap. I thought we were never going to make it back to camp.

Sunset

The camp’s sign 🙂

I paid $250 a night to sleep in a tent. It’s on steps to keep the animals out. Let’s just say I didn’t sleep well.

Elephant from above

*Ok, so when I first got to camp, I asked the director if lions came to our little island. He kind of smiled and said no. I realized on our last day he was lying, because we had lions in camp that morning that the guides scared off before most of us were awake. So, we get to the other island to walk around and I’m scared shitless of walking on this island with hungry lions. So the guide teased me A LOT for being so scared and then tells this ridiculous story about his cousin: His cousin was a guide for another camp, up the river. He’d taken a group out for breakfast in the bush, and had to ‘take care of business’  and went behind a (real) bush. He was gone for awhile, so the tourists went to go find him… A FUCKING LION WAS EATING HIM. The tourists freaked out, got in the range rover (they were at a much more expensive camp than me) and promptly got stuck in the river trying to cross it. They were found hours later when the safari camp started to worry about why they weren’t back yet.  AND YET! He made SO MUCH FUN OF ME FOR BEING SCARED.

Hmph.

Oh, also, my guide’s grandfather died when a hippo gored him while fishing in his mokoro.

Seriously… if I’d known any of this before I went, I may have never gone.  And I would’ve missed out on the experience of a lifetime. It’s one of my favorite memories from my travels, and one of my favorite trips. It definitely holds a special place in my heart. 🙂

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