Our gang of four from Albuquerque, New Mexico have certainly appreciated and witnessed the circle of life described in the below song during the safari vacation of our life in the Serengeti from May 11 to May 20, 2016.
From the day we arrive on the planet
And blinking, step into the sun
There’s more to be seen than can ever be seen
More to do than can ever be done
Some say eat or be eaten
Some say live and let live
But all are agreed as they join the stampede
You should never take more than you give.
by Tim Rice
We had been prepared and coached quite extensively before arriving Arusha by our dear friends, Marsha and Howard Seltzer (ADS Serengeti alumni of 2009 and 2010) and the very wonderful and ever-so-helpful Dawn Anderson of ADS (through telephone calls, several emails and printed materials). Many thanks to Dawn for her knowledge and kindness.
Our trip was every thing we had hoped for and beyond. All the ADS staff were very helpful, courteous, professional and polite. The lodgings were universally unique, well appointed and surrounded by raw nature. We were escorted for safety reason to and from the common/dining areas at every dawn and darkness.
We heard several wild creatures at late nights and early mornings including lion roars and movements just outside our tent lodges. We heard buffalo foot steps and spotted them close by one early morning. The meals were excellent and with extensive menu to choose from.
We fondly thank Anglebert, our wonderful guide, for the “stories” he told us everyday through spotting, tracking the animals and narrating while and before things happened. We saw a cheetah chasing a baby wildebeest. It narrowly escaped the danger when the mother and perhaps relatives and friends chased the hunter away.
We saw one of several very beautiful grey crowned crane ferociously chasing a nearby perhaps threatening duck away, for coming too close to his lifelong mate. They both then romantically danced and kissed. We saw a whole pride of lions happily marching back to the kopjes from their morning hunt with full and bulging stomachs. They then spread out and situated themselves beautifully on the rocks.
We saw the honeymooners on the rock. Also two lionesses attentively and affectionately nursing their six cubs. One mother accommodated and nursed as many of the cubs simultaneously as possible. We anxiously watched a mother lion tormentedly and frantically searching and calling out to her lost cubs. She had evidently left them in the bush for some time while she went hunting for food for the family. After a long while, they happy reunited. We witnessed a leopard mightily and with great effort dragging a young and good sized wildebeest she had just killed up a large acacia tree to feast on.
The great migration mesmerized us to no end when we found ourselves in the middle of the sea of wildebeests. The sheer number was unimaginable and mind boggling. The fascinating stories and sceneries went on and on everyday.
In one early afternoon, while our Landcruiser was stuck in the deep mud, we heard deep breathing in the tall grass immediately next to us. We almost had to hold our breath. That was a rather uncomfortable experience for the four newbys. We were eventually rescued out of the mud by another vehicle with no difficulty.
Our Ngorongoro Crater adventure started with a visit to the Olduvai gorge where we learned about our oldest ancestors. Homo habilis, probably the first early human species, occupying that part of the rift valley area about 1.9 million years ago.
We made an early foggy morning and still dark descent into the Ngorongoro crater. Besides seeing lots of animals including the four massively looking rhinoceroses, the crater itself was a wonderfully beautiful vast meadow of wild flowers and green grassland. The sunrise was spectacular when the beam emerging through the fog and the low cloud and exposing the beautiful meadows and lakes that morning. We left the crater that evening after an unexpected and almost a spiritual experience.
Our ADS safari trip was far beyond our expectation and description. We witnessed many things for the first time in our lives. We appreciate the great efforts and energy by many people and organizations trying to preserve this beautiful planet that we live on for others and younger generations to witness and enjoy. We hope to be able to share this Africa Dream Safari experience with our family in the near future.
Nara and Kris C.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Safari Dates: May 12, 2016 to May 20, 2016