Chilling in the Mopane

Zena said We must go to Kruger, my man Martin is a fabulous guide. I said Let’s Go!, and when August rolled round there we were, chilling in the mopane woodlands around Mopani Rest Camp in the famous Kruger National Park, drinking gin and tonic, gazing out over Pioneer dam from our under-thatch bird-watching stoep.

– seek out chalet 43 in Mopani Camp –

Martin runs Laughing Hyena Safaris, and his experienced Kruger Park nose soon led us to great sightings – big ones, feathered ones and little ones too.

Suddenly! We spotted some spots in the mopane shadows! With great skill we tracked the shadowy spots through the dappled sun and shade of the mopane woodland. What could it be?

Hey, it was! It was a . . a . . leopard! Kruger’s holy grail. With great tracking skill, we had found it:

– Martin showed us how to tell that it was a boy leopard –

. . . ‘course, we actually found it the traditional Kruger Park way:

– check the Sharkie going offroad to shove in front of us – I’m guessing his name was probably Richard –

To celebrate we had lots more gin & tonic, which improved our sightings even more:

A keen photographer and Canon ambassador, Martin aimed his long lens out the window and later let us have some of his pics:

. . and he made us a video:

and he taught us a new bird species: the Burchell’s Poupol

~~oo0oo~~

The Art of the Game Drive

I gave a talk in the Kruger Park once called The Art of the Game Drive. It was magnificent, complete with exciting sightings and livestreaming. Pity was, I had an unappreciative audience. Well, they were from behind the boerewors curtain, so . . you know how they are.

It almost sounded like they had a pet monkey with them, as they kept muttering Ari Aap as I drove them serenely in quiet splendour and exquisite comfort in my VW Kombi 2,1 in subtle camouflage blue and white. But you won’t believe this, when I stopped to examine old poo there was audible sighing. Philistines. The talks are still wildly popular* but I notice none of that particular batch were ever repeat guests. And I mainly have repeat guests.

*Jessie has been a repeat guest dozens – scores – of times. She can appreciate the Art of the Game Drive. Specially if she has her phone, her music and noise-cancelling earphones with her.

~~~oo0oo~~~