We went to Djuma because it's where
Africam started. That's the favorite website of many of you, I know.
(For those of you not familiar with it: www.africam.co.za ) We stayed at
the Bush Camp--the heart of Africam is actually at the new Vuyatela
section. Pippa, Africam's major leader, did invite me over for an
afternoon and it was very interesting to see the room with all the computers
where Pippa does so much of her work. Vuyatela is very pretty and quite an
unusual departure from the design of most camps. Jurie and Pippa, who own
Djuma, have so many things going, including a young family, that I don't see how
they manage to keep going. But they seem to thrive on it. Here are
Pippa and me.
The other huts at Djuma were more traditional, but ours was
one of the new avant garde ones.
Pete was our ranger and that's Morris, our tracker, in the back.
The weather was not good, but it had been
a lot worse. The roads were very bad from the flooding and there was still
water everywhere. We went right on down through this stream with water
over the hood.
On this one, the ruts were so deep and the
road was so steep that Pete had us all get out and walk across and then he went
over in low, low, four wheel drive. (One guest felt safer in the
vehicle.) The camera doesn't begin to capture the steepness.
The bush was so thick from all the rain that we didn't see a
lot of game in the daytime. (till the last day--see next letter) We
saw more at night, but I'm not equipped for taking night pictures. I hope
it will all be on Ed's video. Here are a few shots of some things we
saw. Vervet monkey......
You can hardly see this one, but it was very exciting for me--my first ever
serval! It was scared away by another vehicle before we could get close
enough for a good shot. The area that Djuma is in, the Sabi Sand Reserve,
has many, many camps, so you do run into other vehicles a lot. We had
been spoiled before and found all those other people being in "our
Africa" rather disconcerting.
The game went from the teeny to the
huge. Here's the teeny dwarf mongoose.
And here's the huge elephant. I wish
there had been more light for this. He was way too close for the good
camera, so this is just with the point and shoot again.
We had a real treat after dinner.
One of the other rangers, Jonas, brought out his "magic stick"--a
guitar he had made from the base of an old Coleman lantern, a piece of wood, and
three wires. He played and sang his own wonderful songs for a couple of
hours. His style and sound were very like Paul Simon. He made up
funny songs about the day's happenings, the staff and guests, and also very
poignant ones, such as the story of the woman who had her baby in the tree
during the floods in Mozambique. (Another thing I can't wait to hear on the
Djuma lions are next.
Click on the young lion pride to go to the next page.
Part One Home