**Pictures will be uploaded on better wifi
Late start this morning, with breakfast at 8am. With the early morning yesterday, I only managed to sleep into 6am, but it was nice to wake up, do some writing and drink a cup of coffee in peace and quiet before the hustle and bustle of packing up. I always enjoy these moments in the morning.
We thankfully have a short drive day today, to South Luangwa National Park. We will be staying in a campsite in the park, without any gates or fences. Another one of these once in a lifetime experiences! However, this site also has a lot of monkeys, and they make it challenging as they are always trying to steal any food or other items left around the camp site! Some of them are very cute, but you come to dislike them very much!
We arrive to camp in the afternoon, and have some time to do some much needed laundry, as well as enjoy the pool. The pool overlooks the river bed and I manage to relax with a cold beverage under some shade by the pool. The power has been out in most of Zambia for the last couple of days, so cold has been in short supply, as most places are using generators.
Once again, the rain came in for the afternoon, and this one was a real soaker! Not ideal, since my laundry was still drying and it made all the paths a muddy mess. It also brought out all the bugs and the bathrooms were crawling with beetles, flying termites, lizards and spiders. During one of my visits, I witnessed a huge spider grab one of the flying termites off the ground and drag it away to eat. I must say, I have been tolerating all the spiders quite well, and although it was a fascinating site, this spider was far to big for my liking!! Made me think of the scene from Emperors New Groove!
Thankfully the rain let up, and we were treated by the owners to a lion sighting right outside our camp. I kid you not, there were two female lions who were headed back to a previous kill, less than a minute drive from where our tents were set up. A couple days ago, they brought down a baby elephant. The camp owners recently had burned the remains once it began to rot, and all the animals seem to be done feeding on it. They suspect that the lions had not made another kill and were headed back to the elephant, that was no longer there. It was really awesome to see, but also made you aware how “in the park” you really were, and the likelihood of meeting a lion at your tent!
For dinner we had a brie with chicken and sausage, butternut squash and corn. Our CEO also made a pudding dessert with custard, which I think was my favorite part of the whole meal. After dinner we had a safety briefing about the overnight hours. There is a guard on duty overnight, and because animals, like elephant, hippo and rarely a leopard or lion, walk through camp, it is important to be aware and on the lookout if or when you must leave your tent in the night.
I did have to leave my tent in the middle of the night, and thankfully I did not run into any wildlife.
Tomorrow I am booked for both a morning and an evening game drive which I am so excited for, in hopes of completing The Big Five with a leopard!