On this day our safari guide let us know that we would be leaving for our game drive at 6:30.
This is what an already jet lagged 5 year old says to you when you ask him to say cheese at 6:15 in the morning.
I am glad that he doesn't know any other hand gestures.
It is possible he might have used one at that moment.
Anyway - we were a little tired
Look - I couldn't even take pictures in focus
ok - so it really is pretty out here this early....
and I guess I will get some pretty incredible shots......
oh all right darn it - we are in Africa - let's not be grumpy - this is pretty stinking amazing....
This is a geranuk or a giraffe gazelle. He will actually stand up on his back legs to get branches up high. He is one of the big five that we looked for in this region.
This is everyone and their dog scrambling around trying to see the leopard
This would be the leopard in question
The kids and I talked a lot about what a creative God we have during this trip. So amazing to see the way that the animals adapt to their surroundings.
We watched that leopard for a long time. It is possible that some of the children in my vehicle busted out something to play with during this time.
I was fascinated by the drivers. So cool the way they jockeyed for position and their depth of knowledge was crazy.
I have GOT to look up what kind of bird this is. Our driver was very impressed with this shot when I showed him my camera and said it was a special shot of - insert some fancy bird here - and I can't remember.
A bird watcher I am not....
This was a cape buffalo. one of the "big sumburu 5" that we were looking for. The big 5 in this region were the reticulated giraffe, grevys zebra, oryx, gerenuk and the ostrich.
This is Purity. She was the "children's coordinator" person on the trip. I would guess that she is somewhat a chameleon on these trips and does what people need. I got the feeling from talking to her that some people literally turn their kids over to her. Parents can choose to ride in a different safari vehicle than their kids for a calmer viewing experience. Husband and I are more of a let's say hands on parents and like to manage and handle our own kids. We enjoyed the safari's as a family of 5 and are more comfortable sticking together. There were two afternoons where the kids got to learn to shoot bows and arrows and things and we watched from afar and Purity was there. I also really liked having her along because if I had a question or a problem she was right there. She was VERY helpful because I had one child that is a picky eater and she communicated with the chef for us to get her some plain food that she would eat. ;)
This was our crazy group.
No way we would have ever gone on this trip if it weren't for "The Chief". (Grandma - orange shirt third from the left in the front). Being in a big group of family ESPECIALLY with the young kids was the only way to do a trip like this. There was always an uncle or a cousin or an aunt to help keep things interesting and fun for the kids.
This is the grevys Zebra and this is the last time we would see him on the trip.
Giraffe walking by our lodge while we ate lunch.
Downtime very necessary on an early wake up day.
Our beautiful lodge
The view from the balcony of our room. I got to sit here and read for a whole 10 minutes or so. I am not complaining though - it was a nice 10 minutes.
Our rooms. We actually got to have adjoining rooms for these two nights. Can I get a woot woot?
This is how we kept the children's behavior up. ;)
Just kidding - this was a little closet and we told the buddy to pose for us here. This is the pose he came up with.
Next we went to visit the sumburu tribe at their village.
Our youngest traveler was very nervous about all of this. He was happy to hang out with Aunt Chris during this whole process.
I keep going back to this photograph as one of my favorites. My camera focused on my pretty niece with her clean hair all bundled and the colors of her sumburu necklace and was out of focus on the little child sitting in his hut made of cow dung and sticks. I don't know why but I keep going back to this one.
Cow dung and sticks. The women make them and it normally takes them about 3 weeks. They strap whatever they can find to the top for when it rains.
They showed us how they make fire.
I snapped this of some children playing as we drove by. This is a big big world that we live in and there are a lot of different ways to live. I for one was grateful to see what I saw and grateful to return home to what I know.