Friday, April 16, 2010
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Q: What are the "Big Five" animals that people hope to see on game drives in East Africa's preserves?
A: Elephant, rhino, lion, leopard and cape buffalo (not the American bison)
A: Elephant shrew, rhino beetle, ant lion, leopard tortoise, and buffalo weaver (a bird)
Q: What is four feet tall, six feet wide and has miles of muddy tunnels inside it?
A: A termite mound!
Q: What is the national bird of Kenya?
A: The black-crowned (or -crested) crane
Q: Why do zebras cross the road?
A: To get to the other side, Silly!
Q: What do you call a gathering of giraffes?
A: A tower (really!)
Q: What do you call a languishing of leopards?
A: A leap (Sorry. No photo. Leopards are nocturnal animals.)
Q: What do you call an "mzee" (old one) who misses Maisie & Gwendolyn, Huck & Nell, Nico & Nadia -- and wishes them and their families a very Happy Easter with much love?
A: Granny Smith
Saturday, April 3, 2010
Make no mistake: I would be proud and happy to claim them, in addition to the three wonderful "kids" (15 years older than they) that I have at home. But, seriously, do you think we resemble each other in any way? Anna is a beautiful redhead, Hubert a handsome African American almost twice my height.
Perhaps the best "look-alike" story of all, however, took place last May while the Hardisons were on home leave. I walked over to St. Philip's to help Nan's secretary with some paperwork. Simba came galloping across the campus to greet me. Mind you, Simba is a very large 8-year-old dog, so it is an effort for him to do much more than amble.
"He thinks you're Nan," Josephine announced. "He's an African dog. All wazungu look alike." Shucks. And I thought Simba was pleased to see me... but it's an honor to be mistaken for Nan! Simba and Little Brown and I are living happily ever after right now at St. Philip's. I'm certain, though, that the dogs will be even more excited than the rest of us when the Hardisons return.
Friday, April 2, 2010
We traveled via four-wheel drive vehicle by day, exploring some of the 900+ square miles of the Mara with Isaac, our knowledgeable guide and a member of one of the seven tribes of Maasai. We stayed in an unfenced enclave by night, accompanied by more Maasai (replete with spears), as we made our way to the tent after dinner. We watched, we listened, and we prayed... as we traveled from near-desert to sweeping savannah to stone-encrusted hills. And we discovered that even our wazungu eyes could learn to see majestic elephants posing as rocks on ridges, playful lion cubs hiding-and-seeking in waves of grassy camouflage, and lithe cheetahs stalking their prey, unperturbed by our presence just two meters away.