|Acmat and our expert driver Karioke|
Our two awesome companions on this adventure, Mary and Kaitlin (both from Canada), met each other volunteering in Western Kenya for 3 months. Having finished their stint they had moved onto the 'touring' portion of their trip.
As the drive wore on (our 35 year old truck had trouble with hills, but its unique look turned lots of heads) our excitement dramatically increased when we started spotting animals like zebra, Thompson's Gazelle, and a herd of Masai Giraffe on a forested hillside. After passing through the park gates we spent a few meandering hours looking for game along the way to our camp. We had an amazing time seeing all the animals that would become commonplace over the next few days: Gnu, Elephant, Topi, and a Spotted Hyena.
When we booked our safari we had expected to be camping in small cold tents, using squat toilets and bucket showers. So we were again very pleasantly surprised when we arrived and were shown to our 'bandas' (small cabins w/solar powered electricity), then to the hot (read scalding) water showers. Next, the camp manager had us walk a little further, past the outhouse, to the flush toilets. We ended up almost never using the flush toilets because they were farther, and our camp, we were told, hosted a variety of other guests occasionally: elephants, baboons, lions, and the odd hippo.
We ended the day with a delicious dinner, gluten-free for Erin, and with a beer for Craig. We were very excited for the next day after such a terrific start!