Wednesday, July 1, 2009

passionate observers

Hopefully your still with me on my African adventure, I know I've done at least five posts already, and the truth is I could do about fifty more. But I won't, It's been so much fun taking you along I don't want to overdo it. I think one more after this and I'll be satisfied that I've shared a good bit of what it's like to be on safari in Africa. So, the theme of this post is observing. On Safari the best, most important thing you can bring is patience. I bet you thought I was going to say camera, that's number two for me. To completely enjoy every bit of the experience it's necessary to be patient...waiting, watching, listening...Observing wildlife in it's own environment can be the most rewarding experience in the world if you come with no expectations ( a good guide can be priceless). For me I can honestly say some of the best times I've had were when we stopped moving, sat quietly and the natural world started doing it's thing all around us.

This next series of photos shows what happened when we drifted up quietly, shh, to a pair of soundly sleeping hippos....










...and just like that, they were gone. The enormous speed and agility with which they picked themselves up and ran made it easy to see how they are one of the most dangerous animals in Africa, they are fast! and oh so powerful. You never want to stand between them and their exit to safety. Sorry to wake you guys...

Next series is how silly tourists (me) manage to lose their breakfast muffin to cheeky monkeys, in the first shot you can see the hotel manager running to shoo off the daring monkey, my sister off to the side giving him plenty of room.

The next shots you can see the managers efforts were mainly futile. The monkey got my muffin.


...here he is doing the dine`n dash, I think he deserved the delicious muffin for showing such unwavering bravery (and cheekiness). Then as the manager stood glaring up at the tree, c.m. sat perched on a limb munching the stolen goods, we sat laughing...did you see how he jumped?!


... we saw this gorgeous Martial Eagle fly by...
... and male antelope fighting for dominance, only one can be the head of a herd...
...a beautiful Goliath Heron fishing, then flying away...
Photo by my sister Lindy

...and a Leopard eating his kill, an antelope that he'd drug up this tree...we sat and watched in complete silence with only the light that the moon and the stars could provide, occasionally our guide would point the spotting light. My sister and her great flash managed to capture this amazing shot. We stayed at least an hour until the leopard stood, stretched and then in the elegant way only a Leopard can, he climbed down and slowly walked away...epic...

We saw so much, so many different types of behavior, weavers building nests, dung beetles rolling their balls of elephant poo, Saddle billed storks fishing, monitor lizards sticking out their tongues to catch an insect flying by, we saw seventeen Giraffe walk in single file across a plain and come to a waterhole to drink (i got tears at that)...oh wait! I've got pictures! No, this is long enough... hmm...maybe I should have made an Africa Blog...

t.t.f.n. :)

Love, Lori

42 comments:

  1. What an amazing experience. And what wonderful (sometimes funny i.e. muffin monkey) photos you have to record the memories.

    Our zoo has a great hippo exhibit and I love watching them. Seeing them in the wild must have been....well, wild!

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  2. Lori, it is so generous of you to share with us. I can't believe how all these animals are ever present in the environment and you can take pictures without being eaten. You may want to elaborate on the precautions you took to stay alive.

    Gorgeous pictures.

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  3. Wow, that pic your sister took is surreal (and a bit gross). What a wonderful trip, just amazing!

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  4. I would love to have my muffin stolen by a very agile and CUTE monkey! That last pic is definitely amazing. :)

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  5. Wow Lori. More and more I long to stretch my legs and travel.

    You keep writing friend and I'll keep reading.

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  6. Pat,

    i defintely have more memories than photos! wait, maybe that's the other way around...it's all good. Hippos are hilarious, very entertaining.
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    Rosaria,

    Thank you very much. That is a good question and maybe there are 2 more africa posts left then...☺
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    lifestudent,

    It was only gross when you could hear the bones crunching. sorry.
    It's not really gross when you remember that its all in the circle of life, leopards have to eat.
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    bodaat,

    haha! yes, i felt the same way. so funny and cute. The manager did not think so though. ☺
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    Meagan,

    then you will I'm sure. Put it on your list...thank you for the always kind comments.

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  7. What an experience.The last shot is amazing.Love your posts.

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  8. Lori I will never tire or the Africa you share.

    Your photos are emotive.

    To be in nature to sit and wait I think is one of the most magical feelings in the world and you're bringing that joy to us.

    I once watched a dingo steal (no not a baby) a steak from a diners plate at a holiday resort. I didn't leap to stop it as I knew it wouldn't harm anyone, it just wanted the meat.

    Please keep sharing.... don't stop until you don't want to do it anymore.

    Thank you

    xx Ribbon :-)

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  9. monkeys are BASTARDS! gorgeous pics, darlin'! xxx j

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  10. Sweetheart, those are amazing....wow, I love your photos.The animals are extroaodinary.Thank you, Lori.
    How are you feeling today?xx♥

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  11. I love your Africa posts, they're so interesting. It's nice to see how things are all the way across there.

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  12. Lori, no no, are you crazy? Leaving us here sitting and waiting for MORE and saying, That was it, folks!??? I want to see each one of your photos, and read your comments, and I know how selfish that is, knowing how weak you still feel, but if you take a break of, say, a week, and then carry on?
    Lori, of COURSE your recovery is first, but I wanted to say how MUCH I love your memories!!! And don`t ever think you can bore us!!!

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  13. Great wildlife shots and not so wildlife(monkey). Enjoyed the post! It must have been an amazing trip!
    Thanks for coming to visit Lori-Ann. I must admit, I do love Canadian landscape!

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  14. I'm sat here open mouthed at these fantastic images. What an amazing time you had.

    CJ xx

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  15. I have thoroughly enjoyed every single minute of your blog posts on Africa. You can never bore me with the pics and details. Thanks so much for a wonderful trip - looking forward to at least one more?

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  16. Oh my GOODNESS! Lori (and Lindy) what absolutely magnificent shots....and what fantastic, magical, memory-making experiences.

    Oh, your wondrous description of the giraffe loping across the plain to the water-hole just conjured up the most beautiful picture in my mind. I must paint it for you!

    Those naughty little vervet monkeys – they are so cheeky! But you have to admire their cunning…they usually get what they’re after, don’t they?!

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  17. YIKES! That was me up there ^^, not Alexandra. She was on her way down to Dorset for a hiking weekend with friends and stopped in here for a flying visit and to use my computer for some work stuff! Obviously still logged in under her name. Sorry!

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  18. Well Lori, if you aren't going to do 50 posts, perhaps a book is in order and you can put me on your buying list. Totally awesome pics. Love the Leopard and the little Take Out culprit. Who am I kidding, they are all breathtaking. Thank you so much for your continuous sharing.

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  19. Lori, I love the animal shots. I enjoy your reactions, too. I don't think we are likely to get tired of the African trip especially peppered with your comments. I love the hippos swimming in the water...the splash shot...also I have in my mind an image of the line of giraffes in single file graceful movement. Beautiful. Are you feeling better? What did you get treated for? <3

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  20. I am so deeply envious that you saw a leopard! I hunted high and low for leopard last year and didn't see one! :-(
    And aren't those vervets just such cheeky baggages - a laugh a minute if it's not your muffin that's being stolen! ;-)
    Great shots, Lori and keep the pics and stories coming!

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  21. Nature Stop,

    I'll tell my sister you said that, she'll be so pleased! thank you.
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    Ribbon,

    ah thanks so much, you are very sweet. A dingo? now that sounds completely exotic to me, wow, someday i'd love to see one...
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    Janelli,

    I guess if you have to live with their shenanigans. I kinda feel the same about raccoons!
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    Dear Natsy,

    ah thanks, a bit better ☺
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    Thanks Sammi,

    i like your new profile pic. Sorry i haven't been by, here i come.
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    Dear Geli,

    ok ☺ just don't want to put anyone to sleep ☺ but yes, it's fun to share and i'm so glad you want to hear.
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    Lorac,

    well thank you, I appreciate your comment. I think though that the monkey is still wild even if a bit habituated. They are so funny!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Hi C.J.

    thank you for stopping by! I know you must be so busy now. Yes, our trip was incredible!
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    Dear Nancy,

    thanks so much, you are so kind to say that. I will post some more, one or two...☺
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    Together We Save,

    thank you!
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    Haha TessaAlexandra,

    the same things happened to me! I try to remind my girls the value of signing out...☺

    A PAINTING??!! Giraffes?? ☺ ☺ ☺ ☺
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    Thank you Bogey,

    Such kind words, I really appreciate them so much. If you'd like a book on Africa that we've been a part of you can get On Safari by David Anderson. Maybe someday my husband and I will do our own...☺
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    Cynthia,

    Thank you so much, i'm so glad to know these pics give you pleasure as well. They still don't know what i have, waiting on tests, taking a new med in the meantime, it seems to be helping!
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    Thanks Nicky,

    I know, a leopard. It was incredible. So great to be the only truck too, we were in a place that was empty of people. Seems it was the 3rd time being the charm (my 3rd trip to Africa)Only now I want to see more ☺

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  22. I'm loving the adventure, thank you for sharing! No way, it is not too much. Each and every photo is awesome. I got the heebie jeebies with the critter in your bed though...

    Happy Independence Day to you and your family Lori!
    LL

    P.S. Oh, and thank you for recommending Taste With The Eyes on Nancy's blog! You rock.

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  23. It's clear that you are a fantastic observer because these pics are incredible. The dine and dash series are WOW!! And the hippos, so graceful looking.

    And the leopard - that is an amazing shot.

    I think your series of posts about Africa are GREAT. Keep telling us stories and showing us pictures, please? It was a trip of a lifetime. WOW.

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  24. I must say, monkeys steal my muffins quite often. :P That, and the socks out of the laundry.

    Amazing photos, though!

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  25. Yes Lori! Please do make an Africa Blog! Your stories and series of photos are so stunning and I love to learn about all those beautiful animals!
    The way you present your experiences to us makes it possible to get a slight feeling of how it is to really be there.
    I love to see wildlife too, I love to take pictures too, but I'll have to practice on the "patience" thing a lot more...
    Thanks for sharing!
    HUGS
    :))

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  26. hi lori! i love your blog so much that there is a surprize waiting for you over at my blog. :)

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  27. Dear Lori,

    What amazing photographs!!

    You have the gift... I click away at animal after animal and yet it never comes out lookin anything like that!!! ;)

    I just returned from Africa on the weekend,

    Reading your post makes me wanna jump in the next plane back...

    Lots of love to you my friend,

    Thanks for all the light you bring to this world,

    M

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  28. Please...please...please do not stop at one more post about Africa. I love it...and live vicariously thru your travels. You are amazing...and I love everything you wrote. It is like reading a novel...really.

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  29. in my book there is no such thing as too many pictures! this is so amazing! i want to travel so badly. i enjoy every post you enter and i can't wait till you post more. please the more the better!

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  30. More please Lori! I just love your pictures, especially how beautiful the hippos are. My daughter Ellie loves her stuffed hippo she sleeps with every night. Well, actually she sleeps with all her stuffed animals every night. Though, no spiders, real or stuffed!

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  31. Wonderful shots, Lori. What a privilege .....

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  32. Thanks for these great and fascinating photos Lori! I love experiencing other places through blog friends' travels. That monkey was so funny. I love the shadow in the second photo.

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  33. Lori Lynn,

    thank you and your so welcome, it was an easy thing to do. Your blog is exceptional.
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    Thanks Reya,

    I'm glad that you saw the gracefulness of the hippos, you are a wise observer my friend. Yes, indeed, a trip of a lifetime.
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    Elliot,
    ☺ thanks

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    Michi,

    If only there were more hours in the day! I find myself thinking about a photo only blog, but time prevents it. maybe someday... thank you for the very kind words.
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    bodaat,
    THANKS! how sweet of you to say that.
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    Maithri,

    Hello and welcome back. I followed along on your incredible journey while you were in Africa, I even thought about you while we were there visiting villages and schools. If you get a chance read my post Zimbabwe so you can meet the people and hear their words.

    Thank you
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    Chris,

    Wow, thank you very much. It gives me great pleasure to know that you've enjoyed these posts. I'll do a couple more since it seems theres still an interest!
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    Natalie,

    Thank you for the very kind words. I hope you get to travel soon. I'm sure it'll happen for you. ☺
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    Dear Aden,

    Hippos are really cute and really funny too. I felt bad about waking these two up! more africa coming up!
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    Thanks David,

    Yes, your right. I've done several posts on our trip so far and in each one i try my best to convey that thought. The gratitude I feel.

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  34. Ooops! hi Sallymandy,

    just missed you! thanks for the kind words. Haha, yes, the shadow, so funny! cheeky monkey ☺

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  35. Congrats on the POTD, amazing post!!!!
    ~AM

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  36. You are only the second person I have "known" to go on safari. Your photos and commentaries are wonderful and people like me are blessed to share like this.

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  37. WoW! Monkey bandits, hippos, and all the rest. The leopard was amazing. Lucky you! I can only imagine.

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  38. I'd rather play with hyppos!
    Wait - just kidding!
    The images you collected are wonderful. I can understand that you cherish these memories.

    Congratulations on David's Post of the Day Award!

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  39. WOW!! What an experience!! I came over from authorblog! Congrats on the Post of the Day mention!

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  40. Thank you AirmanMom,

    I really appreciate you coming over and leaving such a kind comment.
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    Wow James,

    It gives me great pleasure to hear you enjoyed this post. Thank you so much for the wonderful comment.
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    Elizabeth Bradley,

    Thank you so much, Yes, it really was a trip of a lifetime. I'm glad you enjoyed.
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    Merisi,

    Thank you, for coming over and thank you for the lovely comments!
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    Cheffie-Mom,

    Thank you so much for the kind comment, I'm so glad you enjoyed this post!

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  41. BlueHost is ultimately one of the best web-hosting company for any hosting plans you might require.

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xoxo lori