The big adventure starts on Saturday, 3rd July with the usual visit to Heathrow and, at the moment, doesn’t have a definite date on which it will finish. However, I do have a flight provisionally booked back to the UK on Tuesday, 19th October.
Roving Rovers. Other than the fact that they use older vehicles, they seem to offer the same as other companies but cheaper. We will be using a Land Rover 110 Defender - otherwise known as the Landy. One great advantage is that they seem to be the only hire company that has vehicles with large game viewing hatches in the vehicle roof.
One of the reasons we settled on Roving Rovers was the good reviews they had received by a number of people on various on-line African communities. Sites like the Lonley Planet's Thorn Tree and the Virtual Tourist are great places to fill in some of the gaps left by traditional guide books.
The friends (in alphabetic order) - who all met through Birmingham Inter-Varsity Club) are
- Bob : an (sub-Sahahan) Africa virgin,
- Mary : who has travelled in Africa with me twice, and
- Michele : who comes from Jo’berg (but now lives in the UK's North-East), has seen more of Africa than myself, has travelled with me twice before.
We are still to get together to decide what we want to do /see !
The second part of my time in Kenya will be spent working in the Serian luxury safari camp in the Massai Mara. I will be working alongside camp management and Massai staff helping in all aspects of running this safari operation and help introduce the local population to the benefits of eco-tourism. There should also be an opportunity to become involved with the Mara Predator Project. The icing on the cake is that the world famous migration should be transiting this part of the massive Serengeti / Mara ecosystem whilst I am there.
The third part is after my departure from Serian on 9th October – I have yet to decide what to do until my flight back. Perhaps go and see Uganda’s primates or tour Tanzania’s southern circuit of National Parks ie Selous and Ruaha . I'd alo like to visit Gombe Stream NP where Jane Goodall did her ground breaking chimp research - but it's in a remote area and difficult to visit : perhaps next time !
"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime." (Mark Twain : The Innocents Abroad, 1869)
Monday, 25 January 2010
Why go back yet again ?"
. . . and they may have something - looking back I've visited Sub-Saharan Africa 10 times over recent years.
So there must be something drawing me back. However, like many other people who admit to this addiction - for that is what it is - I can't put a finger on what that something is.
Some wit said "Everything in Africa bites, but the travel bug is worst of all."
The most scientific based explanation I've heard was put forward by Richard Leakey, the famous paleoanthropologist and fellow Africa addict. His theory was that as all mankind has its origins in that continent, when we visit it sets off some genetic level resonance which, subconsciously, establishes some powerful link.
Whatever the reason, I'm going back ! ! !