We left this morning from the Thiiri Centre. Anne Ogren stayed behind to help Boniface settle into his new job as a violin teacher. She will be there for a week. The rest of us, the kids and parents included, came here to the Samburu game reserve. Samburu is the name of a tribe that is related to the Maasai people. The Samburu and Massai wear bright red colors, lots of beads and jewelry around their necks, and sometimes carry spears. They are nomadic people who originate from these areas. We are staying at a place called the Simba Lodge. This place is CUSH! My room overlooks the Samburu land – there are babboons and crocodiles out my window, and monkeys have already tried to steal Bill’s dessert. The grounds are beautiful – imagine any Miami or Hawaiian resort, and insert Out of Africa landscape, and you have the Simba Lodge. We are supposed to keep our windows shut at night and while on safari, because the babboons may come into our room and wreak havoc. There is a toilet with a kitchen spray nozzle to serve as a bidet, I am supposing.
There are people waiting on us hand and foot. And the food is equal to what you’d find at any high-end hotel in the States. It is a far cry from Meru, where there aren’t toilet seats on every toilet, but there isn’t the warmth and the community that we felt in Meru either. I find that I miss that environment more and more as I sit here in my spacious and extravagent room!
On the way in, we drove through the game reserve and saw lots of new sights. We saw a herd of about 10 zebra, which is a rare sight. Our driver, Joshua, who does this for a living, hadn’t ever seen that many zebras in one place. Most of them were male, too. We saw two kinds of zebra: the common (Burchell) zebra and the Grevy zebra. The former is the kind most Americans would know, and the Grevy has narrower stripes, more oval ears, and a white belly. We also saw oryx, dik-diks, impala, Grant’s gazelles, warthogs, babboon, crocodiles, and monkeys. There were also birds, like great heron, eagles, egret, kingfishers, geese, shrikes, and lots of weaverbirds. We also saw the remains of an elephant – dry bones. We will go out again tonight, so we will undoubtedly see many more! I am so excited.