Williams McIlveen Southern African Adventure 2016 travel blog

driving along the "roads" in the Delta - aka The Red Sea

going out in a mokoro (the closest we will come to canoeing...

mokoroing at sunset

Noah and Robyn with Jabu the orphaned elephant

Thembi, Jabu andMarula - the orphaned elephants

landscape shot with a herd of African buffalo

zebras with some fancy editing by Noah

10 lions eating a buffalo - ugh

a satisfied customer

what was left the next day - ugh

Stanley's camp was the wettest part of the Okavango Delta that we had been in. A typical drive that we did there involved going through many stretches where the water was up to the hood of the jeep - not a problem for the diesel fuelled vehicles that we rode in, but we kind of held our breath until we got to the other side!

Our first full day at Stanley's camp was a unique experience for us as we met a couple and the 3 orphaned elephants that they were caring for. We were instructed not to raise our voice or to make sudden movements around the elephants, but we soon learned how social and intelligent they were. The people who were looking after the elephants figured that they (the elees) understood between 85 and 90 words. That is quite a bit more than our dog Nick understands. A highlight of the morning was getting to walk the elephants while holding onto the end of their trunks. And the biggest of the 3, Jabu, enjoyed removing Robyn and Noah's hats with his trunk, and then putting them on his own head. He was dextrous enough to put them back on onto the kids' heads as well. At the end of our time with the elephants we received a good-bye kiss from Marula. That's one we can cross off of the bucket list!

The rest of our Safaris at Stanley's camp involved seeing some hyenas (did you know that they are second on the food chain, just below lions?), and our first out-of-the-water hippos (did you know that more people in Africa are killed by hippopotami than lions? Apparently they are a bit territorial!). On our last afternoon there Anthony, the vegetarian, decided to stay home from the safari and chill out. This was maybe a good idea, as Shannon and the kids and our guide happened upon 10 lions who just moments before, had killed a large African buffalo. The ensuing feast was gory, but totally compelling at the same time. Our guide was especially excited, as this type of scene was fairly rare to see. When we all returned the next morning, almost all of the buffalo had been devoured. Later that morning we boarded a light airplane, the first of three flights, that took us to a new adventure in Namibia. Botswana had been such a wonderful and wondrous place to visit.

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