It’s my birthday…

Day 2, September 24 – Happy Birthday to me

Breakfast is at 6:00 the next morning and we pile into our vans (same people for the duration of the trip now) to leave by 7:00 am. A six-hour journey begins. The roads are not spectacular anyway, but as we get more remote they worsen. Then after four hours, we emerge onto a gravel roadway that is washboard and pot holed. It is extremely bumpy and loud.  We stop at a viewpoint above the Rift Valley

Me with the Rift Valley in the background

Me with the Rift Valley in the background

and do a little more shopping (2 more masks) and use the bathroom.

Rock hyrax or "dassie" on the other side of the wall at our roadside stop. Thom's photo

Rock hyrax or “dassie” on the other side of the wall at our roadside stop.

We arrive at the camp in the Maasai Mara and are greeted by Masai warriors who do a welcome dance. They also intone a “song” as they dance. After they sing, they begin competing with each other for who can jump the highest.

They're still intoning, but the jumping contest begins. Thom's photo

They’re still intoning, but the jumping contest begins.

The man in jeans to the right is Moe, who was the organizer for this trip. They're getting him to jump with them. Thom's photo

The man in jeans to the right is Moe, who was the organizer for this trip. They’re getting him to jump with them.

One of the warriors then carries our bags and shows us to our tent. Our warrior’s western name was Malachi.

Malachi and me Thom's photo

Malachi and me

We are in large canvas tents, 3 beds to a tent (two with mosquito netting), flushing toilet, sink, and shower. The shower and the toilet have shower curtain “doors” that don’t quite cover the doorway completely. The tent is on a concrete platform and there is a thatched roof above, however when it rained it came through the thatch and the canvas to puddle on our floor.

At 4:45 pm we leave for our first safari.

These are our vans. We had seven for our group. Thom's photo

These are our vans. We had seven for our group.

We see many gazelle, impala, zebra, and wildebeest. Then we see a pregnant lioness and head back to camp.

Impala  Thom's photo

Impala
Thom’s photo

Wildebeests and a Thompson's Gazelle Thom's photo

Wildebeests and a Thompson’s Gazelle

This small river, or possibly just a watering hole. Thom's photo

This small river, or possibly just a watering hole.

Zebras and wildebeests Thom's photo

Zebras and wildebeests

Lioness, possibly pregnant or recently gave birth Thom's photo

Lioness, possibly pregnant or recently gave birth

As the sun was going down after rain. Thom's photo

As the sun was going down after rain.

Arriving back at 6:30 we go directly to dinner and then after dinner there is a campfire. Several Masai warriors join us. Jonathan and Moses tell stories of their coming of age and hunting lions.

Stories around the campfire Thom's photo

Stories around the campfire

I head back to the tent and shower in time enough to be in bed by 10:30.

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