Up Close and Personal with Lions
Wednesday, Oct 22
5:30 a.m. wake up, 6:00 a.m. breakfast, 6:30 leave for airport. Encounter baboons frolicking on the road. Baraka drives us to Lake Myara Airstrip, Captain Mike, Coastal Airlines – 8a.m. flight on the dot to northern Serengetti and Sayari Lodge. Fifty minutes, great flight, sweet family from Switzerland on flight with 2 well behaved children. No stops, land at Kogatende airstrip. While we are waiting for our new driver, we chat with a lovely couple, Sharon and Richard from LaJolla. On their way to the Crater, staying at Crater Lodge for $1,500/night! Albert, our new guide/driver is there and teaches us a new word in Swahili: pole pole (pronounce polay) means slow slow. We wait for another couple to land, also guests at Sayari. Small world: turns out to be lovely young couple we just met at Oliver’s, Juan and Erin Altman Arias. Albert is a keeper and the front of his truck is filled with books: plants, trees, flowers, animals, insects – just so he can give us correct information. Pass the Mara River, alligators, limping wildebeest, giraffes (clicking knee sounds ), zebras, impala, gazelles, baboons. We arrive at our new favorite place, Sayari Lodge, delicious hibiscus juice welcome drink. Nice gift shift, VISA accepted! We’ve really done no shopping to date. Lunch buffet in open-air dining room, cheese from Tanzania (very good). Lovely conversation with Juan and Erin, now living in AbuDabi direct from NY. Just married in Mexico – met on Match.com. Back out with our new friends and Albert on a 4p to 7p game drive. Many lioness – in trees, on rocks – Karen and I are still hoping for a rhino! Back to lodge, community dinner @ 8pm – then goodnight- and back to tent!
Sherri & Karen At Sayari
Thursday, Oct 23
6:30 a.m. – coffee and hot chocolate in room – breakfast in dining room – game drive at 7:30 a.m. with Albert, us, Juan and Erin. Back to the lion on the rocks from yesterday. Sleeping huge male lion, surrounded by pack of lioness. Lots of time out on the Serengetti, ladies have to get out and “check the tires.” Fun to pee in the Serengetti. Albert sets up a lovely picnic on hood of car: coffee/tea/cookies/home made granola – under the trees, beautiful warm day. Migration – very small numbers of wildebeest cross the Mara River – exciting but underwhelming. More fun to watch the elephant migration which follows shortly thereafter. More game drive – giraffes, wildebeest, lots of zebras (over 1 million in Serengetti) – carcass of wildebeest and elephant skull. Back to beautiful Sayari – delicious lunch of zucchini patties, rice noodles, etc and shopping in the gift shop – cuff, bracelets, more…3:00 pm – storm clouds moving in – Karen, Juan, Erin & Albert leave on another game drive. Sherry remains in warm, cozy tent long, hot shower, re-packing, reading. Rain, thunder, lightening! – 7 pm group returns – Albert closed the openings of the car, served – wine, hors de ouvres, Happy Hour on the Serengetti, waiting out the storm. Group witnessed another almost migration, wildebeest seemed a bit more confused, changed their mind and did NOT cross. More with the lion and lioness. Last game drive of the day! Community dinner at 8pm – driver picked us up at tent – rainstorm left everything wet and muddy – soup, tilapia, nice conversation with Katherine, meeting other guests, new guest across table is on his 15th safari. All packed – ready to say goodbye to Sayari and the Serengeti.