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I teach abroad and continue to pursue the life I was given as if it was my last. Many people think it is. In my spare time, I enjoy lapping up ice cream, reading spy novels, and euthanizing manta rays.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Murchison Falls

Hi, just got back from a fantastic 3-day, 2 night tour of Murchison Falls Nat'l Park in the north of Uganda. Some great people and animal sightings for sure. Not pictured but perhaps most indelible were the two hippos outside my tent eating grass for an hour. A few of us were at the bar when we got word. One of the guides asked us whose tent they were circling and it happened to be mine. Well, mine and Ivan's. Ivan was asleep in bed when he heard rustling, opened the zipper and spotted the beast looking right at him. He didn't go out the rest of the night. Six of us watched in awe as the two hippos moved from tent to tent. I got about ten feet away at one point and then one of them turned and faced me. I walked slowly back and resumed my viewing from the weeds.

Additionally, we saw three lions (a mother and two cubs) stalking buffaloes in the tall savanna grass. We followed them to a shady tree where they yawned and sprawled out in the shade. We also got to see giraffe, six white rhinos, scores of elephants in the savanna and along the shores of the Nile, hundreds of hippos, many crocodiles, lots of buffalo, Ugandan kob, waterbuck, a few colobus monkeys, hundreds of baboons, birds galore, and three friendly warthogs, who were the camp pets for the weekend. Again, no leopards. Where are you leopards???

Oh! And the falls itself were spectacular.

Our van's driver Sam escorted nine Americans to and from the Falls. Two Peace Corps volunteers in the east had family visitors. They all came from UP Michigan and Battle Creek. With my dad's background, I had plenty to chat with them about. A volunteer nurse from St. Louis also was on board; she was spending two weeks in a village, caring for the sick and diseased not far from Kampala.
Another van accompanied us the entire way, consisting of a German couple on their honeymoon (Uganda, Mombasa, Kenya, and Dubai was the itinerary), the groom's sister (a volunteer nurse in Uganda), a Med student from Holland, a Norwegian and Swedish duo from Oslo travelling together, and a nurse from Chicago.

Good times.

if you look close enough, you can see two of the three lions under the right side of the tree

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