Day 4: Bush Camping in the Okavango Delta

Today the highlight was an early morning game walk – this time venturing deeper into the delta on the prowl for more wildlife. On the way we got our first proper look at the iconic baobab tree – an incredible tree in that its trunk is so fat, it can live for over 1,000 years. African legend has it that the tree was thrown down from heaven, landed upside down, and its roots continued growing into the sky.

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We also saw some amazing spider webs. Thousands of them nestled in the long grass, each with a spider at its heart. With morning dew hanging on the webs and glistening in the dawn sunlight it was a beautiful scene and, I guess, the last place I’d want to go if I was a fly.

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We also had to wade through water at one point to get deeper into the bush and we started to see a few more creatures. Giraffe in the distance among small trees – munching contentedly. According to our guide – Jerry – they can be pretty mean, even though they seem super-cute. Other info is that the male has darker spots than the female and they give birth standing up – that’s quite a bump start to life!

Beside the giraffe, we saw a few zebra hanging around and B found it especially cool to see different species hanging out together. I found myself thinking about “animal planet” and began imagining the funny voiceovers between the animals. I kept my ideas to myself – probably for the best, there’s a reason I’m no comedian.

Last but not least we saw a Hyena threatening to ruin the party as he circled nearby. But no killing happened on our watch…

It was then time to stroll back to camp, feeling the heat and humidity rise in the middle of the day. Some serious chilling time in the afternoon gave us time to do some good holiday reading. I blasted through an incredible book called “Norwegian Wood” by Murikami, a Japanese author. It was a great story of a young guy who’s trying to find his way in a world in which he doesn’t quite fit. Meanwhile, he becomes the rock for others who need him, but never seems to get enough reciprocal support. Michael Brown recommended this author at Christmas, and it was a wicked option – thanks mate.

The rest of today included a sunset trip out on the makoros – we again narrowly missed a hippo attack. And then at dinner another highlight was some fireside entertainment from our hosts.

They performed some cool local songs with three part harmonies overlayed with some wicked dance moves. 2 that stick in my mind I’ll call:
1. The Doddering old man – complete with walking stick
2. The Bullfrog. Hopping around and croaking at the same time

“The Worm” has some serious competition.

We also played a kids game where we needed to choose an animal for ourselves (I was a Buffalo; B a Kudu) and then if the group leader said our animal name we’d need to acknowledge him by saying “chief”. Chief would then ask us for another animal name, from those in the circle. This continued until someone made a mistake or hesitated. Very good fun and a task only the quick-witted, intelligent and good looking can conquer. (I won by the way. Boom).

We’ll remember this game when we come to teach the kids in Kenya…

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