A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about kenya airways

Arusha - Kilimanjaro - Nairobi - Dubai - Birmingham - Home

The long journey home


View The Gowler African Adventure - Kenya & Tanzania 2016 on Grete Howard's travel map.

large_Goodbye_Africa.jpg

Kilimanjaro Airport

At Kilimanjaro Airport we join a long queue just to enter the departure building, caused by the first of many, many security checks. Bags are X-rayed, as are the passengers. My watch has to come off (it’s plastic, so I don’t understand why.), and they thoroughly check my memory cards from my pocket.

large_Kilimanjaro_Airport_13-1.jpg

Once we are inside the building, we join another long queue for check-in. There are three desks open; one has a problem with someone who has left their passport back at the hotel; a larger-than-life African woman is giving the staff at the second desk hassle, and someone is trying to check in a huge South African group at the third desk. Groan. This could take a while.

Eventually we make it to the front, but for some reason the attendant is unable to print our luggage tags (the boarding cards were fine), so it has to be hand written. Our final destination is Birmingham, England, which the girl has no idea of the three-letter airport code for. We rummage through all our paperwork and finally find it.

The African woman and girl whose partner has gone back to collect his passport, have been asked to wait to one side. They are both sobbing quietly. The large South African group is still there.

We proceed through the passport and boarding card check, to wait in some sort of pre-lounge, before being called through another X-ray. Shoes off, watch off, SD cards checked, dung beetle examined. Heads shaken.

large_Kenya_Airways_Flight_13-1.jpg

The small plane to Nairobi offers very little legroom, but as it is nowhere near full, we are able to spread out. It’s only an hour flight anyway, so no big deal.

large_Kenya_Airways_Flight_13-3.jpg

My last African sunset. For this time.

large_Kilimanjaro_Airport_13-2.jpg

Nairobi Airport

large_Kenya_Airw..airobi_13-1.jpg

At Nairobi Airport we go through another X-ray (hand luggage) and scanner (people) and make our way to the transfer desk to get our boarding cards.

The officer at the boarding gate security check (more X-rays and scanners) confiscates my loose safety pins! My passport and boarding card details are recorded in the ‘naughty people book’. The whole thing is pretty ridiculous as David’s safety pin goes through fine! Doh!

large_Safety_Pin.jpg

We have to endure another passport and boarding card check before being allowed into the gate waiting area, and again on boarding the plane. I am not really complaining – I would rather go through hundreds of security checks if it means that we are safe from people with ill intent.

large_Nairobi_Airport_13-1.jpg

large_Nairobi_to_Dubai.jpg

large_Emirates_Logo_1.png

Again the flight is not full, so we take a row each, and manage to catch a bit of much needed sleep (it's the middle of the night after all).

large_Nairbo_-_D..information.jpg

large_Dubai_by_N..he_Air_14-2.jpg
Approaching Dubai

large_8AF38E6B0F4C935B895CF739F0C645B2.jpg

large_Nairbo_-_D..rking_plane.jpg
This journey seems to have been one long queue - here we are waiting to get off the plane

large_Dubai_Transfer_Bus.jpg
On the transfer bus

Inside the terminal there are immense crowds waiting for the X –ray and security. The machine beeps at me, so I am pulled aside to be frisked in a private room. This is a great opportunity for me to practice my extremely limited local language skills; but my “Salaam Aleykum” is met with a huge smile and the question “You speak Arabic?”

large_8B07988DEEC669817464C6063BE31A39.jpg

large_Dubai_Airport_Shopping_1.jpg

large_8B699BD20DAEDE43E566B4F15DEC1AB8.jpg
All shopped out!

large_Dubai_Airport_Sunrise_1.jpg
Sunrise over Dubai Airport

large_Dubai_to_Birmingham.jpg

We have great seats on this A380-800, just behind the cockpit – they appear wider and longer than usual. Yet again we have a whole row each, making the seven-and-a-half hour flight considerably more bearable.

large_Emirates_A..irmingham_1.jpg

large_Great_Britain.jpg

The approach to Birmingham Airport gives me a chance to photograph England’s Green and Pleasant Land from above.

large_Approaching_Birmingham_1.jpg

large_Approaching_Birmingham_2.jpg

large_Approaching_Birmingham_5.jpg

And Birmingham.

large_Birmingham_from_the_air_1.jpg

The not-so-happy ending

The landing is extremely smooth and all is going well until we come to collect our luggage! Part of David’s case is missing. We’d both strapped an extra day-sack on to the back on the main bags, but someone has obviously stolen David’s and were interrupted taking mine off as one of the fasteners have been undone.

large_Bags_1A.jpg

large_Bags_3A.jpg

There is no way it would fall off by itself, so this is deliberate theft! We go to Emirates Customer Service desk to report it, but they refuse to lodge a report as only part of the luggage is missing. They send us to the Lost Luggage desk, who refuse to lodge a report, suggesting instead that we send them an email to report it. They send us to the police station to report it, as it is theft, not loss.

large_West_Midlands_Police.jpg

The police don’t want to know as it “could be just lost”. We explain that there is no way it would accidentally fall off, and eventually they very reluctantly take a report, but can’t give us a reference number for some stupid reason or another.

We come away feeling extremely frustrated as no-one seems to want to take ownership, we are being passed from pillar to post, which is the last thing you want after a 32 hours journey!

POST NOTE: When coming home I try to contact Emirates to claim for the lost items – guess what: they don’t want to know because we don’t have the ‘Luggage Irregularity Report Number’ from the original people who didn’t want to know! Grrrrr

Three lessons learned (thankfully there was nothing of any real value in the bag):

1. Don’t attach anything to the outside of the bag that can be removed, even if it takes a lot of effort.

2. Get the checked in luggage cling-film wrapped, especially if we are travelling through Nairobi Airport.

3. If we do suffer a loss of any kind, INSIST on a report!

The final insult

Lyn and Chris have been patiently waiting for us to finish dealing with the Emirates counter (10 minutes), Lost Luggage desk (10 minutes) and police (45 minutes), but we can finally call the Valet parking company and get them to deliver the car for us to drive home.

After just a few minutes the car arrives – complete with two scratches that were not there when we dropped it off. Chris very politely points them out to the delivery driver, who brusquely replies: “You have to prove it wasn’t scratched when we received it” and hands us an email address. Great! Another person with a ‘couldn’t care less’ attitude.

large_Scratch_2.jpg

large_Scratch_3.jpg

Please take me back to Africa where we constantly received excellent customer service!

SECOND POST NOTE: The parking company’s photos taken at the time of delivering the car to them proved inconclusive (so they say), but they offer to pay for restoration of the paintwork as a ‘gesture of goodwill’. The good news is then scratches come off with some T-Cut and they refund the entire parking charge.

large_Home_Sweet_Home_1A.jpg

Back home we all agree what an amazing time we have had – and we start planning the next one

Posted by Grete Howard 06:42 Archived in Tanzania Tagged police home_sweet_home emirates theft kenya_airways lost_baggage kilimanjaro_airport nairobi_airport birmingham_airport baggae airport_theft police_report Comments (1)

Nairobi - Kilimanjaro - Arusha - Maramboi

Let the next stage of the adventure begin


View The Gowler African Adventure - Kenya & Tanzania 2016 on Grete Howard's travel map.

large_Day_4_of_t..Adventure_2.jpg

After a fitful sleep we drag ourselves out of bed this morning for a 05:00 pick-up for the airport and a day full of security checks ahead.

large_Early_Morning_Start_3.jpg

The first check comes in the form of a road ‘block’ on the approach road to the airport where the cars are given a once-over while passengers get out and walk through an X-Ray and security screening.

large_Road_Check..obi_Airport.jpg

Security Check # 2 sees our tickets and passports inspected in order to gain entry into the terminal building.

Check # 3 is a conveyor-belt X-ray for all the bags, including the checked-in luggage. Panic sets in when the tray containing my camera and phone is accidentally pushed off the belt by the stuff behind it, and lands upside down on the hard tiled floor. A broken camera on the second day of the trip is the sort of thing I have nightmares about! I take a quick picture of David to check it out, and thankfully it appears to be fully working. Phew.

large_David_at_Nairobi_Airport.jpg

Having checked in on line last night for today's flight, the bag drop is fairly painless. Check # 4 = passports.

large_Check_in_a..obi_Airport.jpg

In order to be allowed to join the queue for Immigration, we have our passports and boarding cards checked (#5).

large_Immigration_1.jpg

At Immigration, the passports are scanned, fingerprints are taken and we are photographed. (Check # 6) We have now officially left Kenya.

large_Lyn_and_Ch..i_Airport_1.jpg

Consulting the departures board to see which gate we are going from, we are dismayed and somewhat confused to find our flight has been cancelled. Why on earth did the check-in staff not say anything when we dropped our bags off some ten minutes ago?

large_Flight_Cancelled.jpg

We queue for the Kenya Airways Customer Service Desk, and find that the flight has not really been cancelled as such, it has just been combined with a flight to Zanzibar – which means that our flight leaves half an hour earlier than scheduled (and then travels on to Zanzibar).

Customer Services check our passports (#7), and re-issue the boarding cards. When we checked in on line last night we specifically chose left-hand side window seats behind the wing in order to be able to see Mount Kilimanjaro from the air as we come in to land in Tanzania. I ask for similar seats this time too, but am told that it is not possible as the plane is full. Bummer! Mind you, it is very dull and grey today, and quite misty, so I don’t suppose we would be able to see much anyway.

Between the main departures hall and the gate is security check # 8, with all hand luggage X-rayed and a full body scanner. All accessories must be removed, including watches, shoes, belts, glasses and such like.

Not until we reach the departure gate does Chris realise that he has left his watch behind at the scanner. He rushes back to retrieve it. “I left my watch behind” he tells the security officer, pointing to the watch, which is still exactly where he left it. “What does it look like?” the chap asks. “Well…” says Chris, rather bemused by now …”it has a blue and red strap… like that!” gesturing towards the watch. “Oh”, says the security guard, “is this yours?”

Chris arrives back just as we are called forward to go through security check # 9, showing our passports and boarding cards before getting on a bus bound for the plane.

large_Kenya_Airw..limanjaro_1.jpg

The cabin crew perform check # 10 (boarding cards) as we enter the plane.

Much to our amusement – and joy – we find we have exactly the same seats as we chose last night when we checked in on line: window seat, left-hand side, just behind the wing.

large_Kenya_Airw..limanjaro_3.jpg

large_Kenya_Airways.png

large_Nairobi_-_Kilimanjaro.jpg

There is a low cloud cover some hundred metres or so above the ground, but it is just a thin layer, which we fly above.

large_Kenya_Airw..limanjaro_4.jpg

Mount Kilimanjaro’s twin peaks rise majestically above the cloud cover. At 4,877 metres, it is the highest mountain in Africa and very popular amongst climbers.

large_5391703798C1267AEDF46E84EAABDC75.jpg

The next peak we spot is Mount Meru, a 4,562 metre high dormant volcano, which is believed by some to be the point where Noah’s Ark came to rest as the flood receded. There is no sign of the Ark today.

large_Kenya_Airw..Mount_Meru2.jpg

From the sunny skies above the clouds, we descend into the thick pea-soup layer where we can hardly see the tip of the wing. A very strange sensation indeed.

.

large_Kenya_Airw..limanjaro_5.jpg

Soon we are through to the other side of the clouds and ready to land at Kilimanjaro International Airport in Tanzania.

large_Kenya_Airw..limanjaro_6.jpg

large_Kilimanjar..l_Airport_1.jpg

large_Kilimanjar..l_Airport_2.jpg

large_Kilimanjar..l_Airport_3.jpg

Two more checks (passport and customs – numbers 11 and 12!) and we are finally in Tanzania! After all the warnings we received about immunisations, none of us are asked about our Yellow Fever certificate!

As I said before, our flight left half an hour earlier than scheduled, and it is a larger plane than the original - thus faster, which means we arrive some 45 minutes before ETA and there is no one there to greet us. We are not alone as we wait outside the terminal building for our driver.

large_Kilimanjar..l_Airport_4.jpg

large_Kilimanjar..l_Airport_5.jpg

A huge dung beetle causes some amusement amongst the waiting passengers, and Chris calls me over, as he knows that this is the item right at the top of my wish list. Pfft. This one is dung-less, that doesn’t count.

large_Dungless_Beetle.jpg

Malisa turns up just as the rain starts, wearing a ready smile that we will come to know and love over the next couple of weeks. Instantly likeable, he seamlessly fits into our ‘family group’ and immediately joins in with our sarcastic sense of humour.

large_Malisa_1.jpg

large_55B485A5CF0415851A395E61E9892E3C.jpg

First stop – the supermarket to stock up on some of life’s little necessities.

large_Supermarket_Shopping_4.jpg

large_Supermarket_Shopping_1.jpg

large_Supermarket_Shopping_3.jpg

large_Supermarke..vanna_Dry_1.jpg

On the one-hour journey from the airport to Arusha, Lyn and Chris take in all the African street scenes that have become so familiar to me over the years. Having safari newbies with us means that I look at these scenes with new eyes as I share their excitement and wonder.

large_Street_Scenes_2.jpg

large_Loading_li..n_the_bus_1.jpg

large_Street_Scenes_-_Corn_1.jpg

large_Street_Sce..ling_Cart_2.jpg

large_Street_Sce..rns_on_Bike.jpg
Carrying milk churns

large_Street_Scenes_3.jpg

large_Street_Sce..ing_Grass_1.jpg

Malisa explains that farmers with five cows or fewer don’t tend to send their cattle out to graze, they send their men out to fetch the fodder while the cows stay home.

large_Street_Sce..ing_Grass_2.jpg

Works are in place to make this road into a nice new dual carriageway. It’ll be great when it is finished, but for now the construction causes the usual traffic jams.

large_Street_Sce..oad_Works_1.jpg

large_Street_Scenes_1.jpg

large_Transporting_Bananas_1.jpg

Blue Heron

large_The_Blue_Heron_1.jpg

At the Blue Heron in Arusha we meet up with Tillya again. He took the bus from Nairobi to Arusha last night, a journey which used to take six to seven hours when we first started coming to Tanzania, but can be done in a speedy three hours now that the new road has finally been completed.

large_Malaika_Children_s_Home.jpg

Blue Heron is run in conjunction with Malaika Children’s Home, a charity that helps local underprivileged children. One of the many things I like about Tillya and Calabash Adventures is that they are very socially and environmentally conscious in their choices of places to visit / stay / eat.

large_The_Blue_Heron_3.jpg

large_The_Blue_Heron_4.jpg

large_The_Blue_Heron_5.jpg

large_The_Blue_Heron_2.jpg

Chicken Shawarma and Mango Juice seem to be the popular choices for lunch.

large_Chicken_Sh..Mango_Juice.jpg

Our lunch is accompanied by a pair of Yellow Bellied Sunbirds.

large_Sunbird__Yellow_Bellied_2.jpg

large_Sunbird__Yellow_Bellied_3.jpg

After (the very early) lunch we are back on the road, heading for the wilderness and our first safari lodge. A road trip in Africa is always exciting, with many things to see along the side of the road.

large_Woman_carr..on_her_head.jpg

large_Cattle_Herding_1.jpg

Whistling Acacia

The whistling acacia tree is so called because these brown nodules (they are not fruit, but hollow swellings) have small holes in them (caused by ants) which creates a whistling sound when the wind blows.

large_Whistling_Acacia_1.jpg

The acacia tree and the ants have a symbiotic relationship, a kind of mutual respect. The tree provides the ants with food by secreting droplets of sweet fluid, and the ants in return protect the tree by attacking anything that tries to eat its leaves. The pheromones given off by the ants act as a warning to giraffes and other animals who then leave the tree alone.

large_Whistling_Acacia_2.jpg

It's not all lovey-dovey between the two parties though, as the ants also fiercely protect 'their' tree from enemy ant colonies by trimming the branches and flowers of the acacia, which stunts the growth of the tree, killing the tips so the tree cannot propagate itself.

Maasai Manyatta

This is Maasai land we are passing through, and you can tell the number of wives a man has by the number of huts. One hut = one wife. This guy has seven, although some can have up to 20 or more.

large_Maasai_Man..has_7_wives.jpg

large_Maasai_Manyatta_2.jpg

large_Cattle_at_watering_Hole_1.jpg

large_Maasai_Boys_1.jpg

Sisal

A plant in the agave family, sisal yields a stiff fibre used to make a variety of products such as rope, mats, bags, carpets and cloths. I have seen these plants along the side of the road before, but had no idea what they were. I just thought they were a pretty plant.

large_Sisal_2.jpg

I certainly never expected to see camels grazing in the fields. I can’t remember ever seeing camels on previous visits to Tanzania.

large_Camels_2.jpg

While the rest of us admire the marvels of nature and man, David takes an afternoon nap.

large_David_takes_a_nap_1.jpg

The road along this stretch has improved beyond all recognition since we first came this way nine years ago. It is now very smooth and comfortable and cuts the travel time between parks considerably.

large_New_Improved_Roads.jpg

Every now and again we get a glimpse of Lake Manyara, the alkaline lake Ernest Hemmingway dubbed “the loveliest in Africa” and whose shores we will be staying by tonight.

large_Lake_Manyara_3.jpg

Donkey Cart AKA Maasai Landrover

A local family struggle to get a heavily-laden donkey cart up a slope.

large_Donkey_Cart_1.jpg

large_Donkey_Cart_2.jpg

The more they push, the less willing the donkeys become. Is this where the “stubborn as a mule” expression comes from?

large_Donkey_Cart_3.jpg

large_Donkey_Cart_4.jpg

In the shade of a tree, a group of Maasai village elders hold their weekly meeting.

large_Maasai_Vil..s_Meeting_1.jpg

I am amused to see that some of them arrived on motorbikes - 21st century Maasai.

large_Maasai_Vil..s_Meeting_2.jpg

Birds of prey soar above or rest in the trees.

large_Pale_Tawny_Eagle_1.jpg
Pale Tawny Eagle

large_Tawny_Eagle_2.jpg
Tawny Eagle

large_76F7ECE6C3BA3222D5ADC6F604BD0E0B.jpg
Augur Buzzard

large_Pale_Tawny_Eagle_2.jpg
Pale Tawny Eagle

large_Dark_Tawny_Eagle_2.jpg
Dark Tawny Eagle

This tree is home to a number of weaver birds – notice how they make their nests on the western side of the tree due to the prevailing winds.

large_Weaver_Bird_Nests_1.jpg

large_Weaver__Chestnut_2.jpg
Chestnut Weaver

large_Weaver__Lesser_Masked_3.jpg
Lesser Masked Weaver

large_Weaver__Chestnut_7.jpg
Chestnut Weaver

large_Weaver__Lesser_Masked_2.jpg
Lesser Masked Weaver

Soon we start to see our first wild animals.

large_Grants_Gazelle_4-1.jpg
Thomson's Gazelle

large_Eland_and_Zebra_4-1.jpg
Eland and Zebra

large_7B1A76EBF8AEF28175A6431D678926AA.jpg
Zebra

large_Wildebeest_4-1.jpg
Wildebeest

The wildebeest are chased by four young Maasai boys, wearing black and with their faces painted. Although they look menacing, the attire merely signifies that they have recently undergone the circumcision ceremony, which takes them from being young boys to becoming feared and respected morans (warriors). The white paint which adorns their faces (you can’t see it very clearly in these photos as they are a long way away) is used to repel any ‘evil eyes’ to help aid their recovery after the operation. Armed only with sticks / bows and arrows, the boys wander alone in the wilderness for three months to prove their manhood.

large_Maasai_Boy..cumcision_3.jpg

large_Maasai_Boy..cumcision_5.jpg

Even during the Green Season there is a lot of activity around the waterholes.

large_Goats_at_the_Waterhole_2.jpg

large_Egyptian_Geese_2.jpg
Egyptian Geese

large_Goats_at_the_Waterhole_4.jpg

large_Great_White_Egret_2.jpg
Great White Egret

At a small settlement we see catfish from Lake Manyara drying.

large_Catfish_fr..e_Manyara_2.jpg

While the kid is pleased to see us, the mum is none-too-happy with us taking photos of her dinner, so we make a hasty retreat.

large_Small_Settlement_1.jpg

Impala Harem – one male will have several females. These gazelles are affectionately known as McDonalds after the M shaped markings on their rumps.

large_Impala_4-1.jpg
Impala

large_Grey_Headed_Kingfisher_1.jpg
Grey Headed Kingfisher

To me there is something even more special about seeing these wild animals along the side of the road rather than in the actual national parks. I know there are no physical boundaries around the parks so that the animals can wander freely between them, but even so…

large_B4929947B7CEBE6AAF1B15B6BACA2F64.jpg
Zebra

large_B490C547C044E6314B7E9C45889E1237.jpg
Fischer's Sparrow-Lark

large_Maramboi_Tented_Camp.jpg

Maramboi

After three hours or so on the road, we reach the turn-off for Maramboi, our home for the next two nights.

large_Maramboi_1.jpg

Almost immediately after entering the large grounds of the lodge (it set in an exclusive conservancy area that covers 25,000 hectares and is run by the local Maasai community), we encounter a giraffe right next to the track.

large_Giraffe_4-2.jpg

More follow.

large_Giraffe_4-3.jpg

large_Giraffe_4-4.jpg

large_Magpie_Shrike_4.jpg
Magpie Shrike

large_A6E9459C03FDC6A6047346625DA38AAA.jpg
Helmeted Guineafowl

large_Welcome_Drink_7.jpg

large_Hibiscus_T..ome_Drink_2.jpg
Hibiscus tea - a new experience for me

Check in procedures are interrupted by a group of warthogs walking through the grounds.

large_Warthog_4-1.jpg

We stayed here at Maramboi a couple of years ago, but at that time we arrived in the dark and left before it got light, so it is really nice to be able to see the lodge in daylight today.

large_Maramboi_75.jpg

large_Maramboi_61.jpg

It is quite a big place, and the main restaurant / bar area is on a raised wooden deck, with views of endless vistas of rolling golden grassland and palm lined desert across to the shores of Lake Manyara and the escarpment of the Rift Valley / Ngorongoro highlands beyond.

large_Maramboi_56.jpg

large_Maramboi_54.jpg

large_Maramboi_55.jpg

Since our last visit there have been a number of upgrades, such as all new decking/railings, refurbished rooms and a completely new swimming pool area.

large_Maramboi_53.jpg

large_Maramboi_68.jpg

We are shown to our rooms, and we spend some leisure time on the balcony with a drink. There are not many places where you can see giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, impala and a plethora of colourful birds from your private balcony.

large_Maramboi_-_Our_Room_2.jpg
Our room

large_Maramboi_-_Our_Room_1.jpg

large_Maramboi_-..r_balcony_4.jpg
View from our balcony

large_Maramboi_-..h_a_Savanna.jpg
David with his Savanna

large_Maramboi_-..r_balcony_7.jpg

large_Sunbird__Beautiful_4.jpg
Beautiful Sunbird

large_Maramboi_-..ng_Safari_1.jpg

large_Common_Bulbul_2.jpg
Common Bulbul

large_Maramboi_-..-_Giraffe_6.jpg

large_Maramboi_-..e_Manyara_1.jpg

large_Sunbird__B..__Female__2.jpg
Female Beautiful Sunbird

large_Maramboi_-..-_Giraffe_3.jpg

large_Common_Bulbul_1.jpg
Common Bulbul

large_Maramboi_-..s_Gazelle_1.jpg

large_Maramboi_-..-_Giraffe_1.jpg

large_Sunbird__Beautiful_5.jpg
Beautiful Sunbird

Grete & David's Wedding Anniversary

This evening we have a private sundowner by the lake to celebrate our 39th wedding anniversary.

large_Anniversary.jpg

large_Sundowners_1.jpg

large_Sundowners_31.jpg

large_A82356B204F261B8CD6218ED5FC15A2F.jpg

large_Sundowners_2.jpg

large_Sundowners_3.jpg

I set my camera on a tripod, affixing an intervalometer to it so that it will automatically take one photo every 30 seconds until I tell it to stop. That way I can enjoy the sunset, drinks, snacks and company too.

large_Sunset_-_C..ervalometer.jpg

large_A8320987E14F84C5035DA4EB84FACD6C.jpg

.

The sunset is not spectacular, but the ambience, surroundings and company make it very special indeed.

large_A869E7E5CB0C7C08DD005E5DD4D56BC3.jpg

large_Sunset_8.jpg

large_Sunset_9.jpg

large_Sunset_10.jpg

large_Spoonbills_Flying_4.jpg
Flying spoonbills

large_Spoonbills_Flying_5.jpg

large_Sunset_15.jpg

large_A88A3F84F50DA0CBF7AE0A47A2A4449A.jpg

We have to be back up at the lodge before daylight fades completely, as it is not safe to wander around the grounds after dark.
As we start to make our way back, it feels wrong to leave the waitress on her own down by the lake, with only an empty bottle of wine to protect herself against wild animals with, so we hang around until the askari (Maasai security guard) can be seen making his way across the plains.

large_Sundowners_4.jpg

That, of course, leaves the five of us walking back in the dark with a couple of tripods for protection. All is well that ends well, and we all make it back to the restaurant without incident.

large_A91DC228E2F13C0ED6B3F09628E825FB.jpg

Dinner

This evening the kitchen is serving a Mongolian BBQ where we choose our vegetables from a buffet and the chefs prepare them, along with our chosen meat, in a large wok. They add various sauces of our choice and finally pasta or rice. The result is absolutely delicious.

large_Mongolian_BBQ_3.jpg

As we finish our meal, a commotion is heard behind us. All the kitchen workers come out singing, with the guy at the end banging a dustbin lid. As you do. They walk around the tables for what seem like an eternity, as if they are not quite sure whose birthday it is. Eventually the cake is placed in front of me!

.

So… there is apparently a story behind this cake. Knowing that it is our wedding anniversary today (39 years, how time flies), Lyn wanted to do something special. She saw on the Maramboi website that they do celebration cakes so she contacted them. They replied to say they were very happy to provide a cake but they needed our booking reference. This, of course, is something Lyn doesn't have as we booked the lodge as a package through Calabash Adventures. Lyn then contacted Calabash, and Tillya managed to get this organised for her. Thank you both, it was a lovely thought and helped make the day very special for us.

large_Wedding_Anniversary_1.jpg

The perfect end to another perfect day. Thank you Calabash Adventures for organising this safari for us.

large_B14C93B9C24A8B496342AB6F13BF059D.jpg

Posted by Grete Howard 00:45 Archived in Tanzania Tagged animals birds sunset road_trip travel vacation airport holiday africa safari tanzania birding giraffe kilimanjaro glamping arusha bird_watching sundowners tented_camp calabash_adventures which_safari_company best_safari_company maramboi kenya_airways blue_heron Comments (4)

(Entries 1 - 2 of 2) Page [1]