Wednesday, 24 December 2008 Tomorrow will be our first Bangladeshi wedding anniversary with F.! Nights and early morning hours are very cold in Masai Mara! One needs to dress in layers. Camp managers put hot water bags in our beds to keep us warm. Last night, the leopard came by our tent again. She got on the chair in our veranda, then pulled her hunt to the bush next to our tent and ate it including the bones. From time to time, she roared. In the morning, we saw two impalas hanging out in front out tent. The camp manager's wife told us that these could actually be the bushbucks that see the camp as their territory. After lunch, we will go to see the rhinoceroses. This way, I will get to see all the animals I wanted to see; however, we still haven't seen any hyenas. I would in fact like to see a hyena as well. We only have two days left here. First, I am terrified of getting on a caravan plane to get to Nairobi, even though it is not a Cessna plane. Besides this, I am sad. I will miss here; the air, nature, slow and relaxed life style and the wild animals. I don't want to return to cold, hurried and stressful London. I don't want the holiday to end. To top it all, last night, I dreamt that our London MD fired me. God forbid! I can't believe this, right now, while I am sitting at the veranda of our tent and writing this diary, a bushbuck walked and then ran right in front of me. This is a fairyland. It is very different than modern and western life, so nice!
... We went for an early evening safari. Before I write about it, I should note the following. In Swahili, elephant is "tenbo," hippopotamus is "kibaki", zebra is "puma milia" and bye bye is "alla." Now let's go back to the safari. Today was very cloudy, partly rainy and windy. It is pretty chilly. There were exotic birds, which we saw for the very first time. But the most interesting today were the rhinos. 6 orphan rhinos have been rescued from South Africa (their parents have been murdered by hunters for their horns) and brought to Kenya. When Kofi Annan came to Kenya last year to act as an intermediary during the political problems were taking place, they named a newborn rhino Kofi Annan. Kofi Annan the rhino is now 11 months old.
We got so close to the rhinos that I was very amazed. They are very dangerous and strong animals. They look pre-historic, and they are anyway.
But because they have grown up among the rangers, they are used to humans. We could even touch the baby!
It was an incredible experience. I was so happy. Its skin is so thick that it is rougher and harder than any other surface I know. It also has some hair. As the sun started setting, the acacia, desert date trees and the sky's changing colours behind the clouds were as beautiful, romantic and rich in colour as if they came out of the hands of the most talented painters.
Here, in nature, I feel very happy. If I were to be born again, I guess I would want to be a zoologist. Seeing the animals all the time, spending time with them and caring for them make me very happy.
Tomorrow in the early morning, we are going for a walking safari. Tonight is Christmas night and they are going to serve ostrich meet for dinner. Of course, I would never eat it. As for Christmas tree, instead of a pine tree, a short tree with big thorns, which is very common in Kenya (giraffes love its leaves) has been decorated in the camp.