Lioness in Tarangire / Photo by: Leslie Wainger
Our final “day” in Tarangire was really just a drive out of the park, then on to Manyara Ranch and the affiliated primary school, before finishing up at Gibbs Farm, a resort (the only appropriate word, if you ask me) aka eco-lodge where we would be spending the night before moving on to the Ngorongoro Crater. But honestly, there was just no such thing as making a “clean getaway” from Tarangire, because the wildlife would not be denied.
Day 3 was our first all-day drive, and I loved it. If it were up to me, we would have done all-day drives every day. Of course, if it were up to me we’d also still be in Africa and the safari would never end. If I’d thought Day 2 brought a lot of elephants, Day 3 was the Powerball jackpot of elephants.
One of the best and worst things about living in Africa as an expatriate is the speed at which the unexpected happens. Just going to the shops, out of nowhere I was faced with a tribunal of very young Muslim girls curious about Muzungus (white people). They had lots of the kind of questions that only children have the innocence to ask, such as am I hairy all over and if they rub my skin will it turn theirs white. Occasionally these random riptides in the flow of your day evolve rapidly into what I can only describe as adventures. In the fall, I had one of these adventures that makes Africa for me.
Full days in the parks followed one of two patterns: separate morning and late afternoon drives (the norm) or an all-day drive with a picnic lunch in the park. As you’ll see later, though, some of those picnics were pretty impressive. Our first full day in Tarangire, aka Day 2, was a two-drive day, and our second (Day 3) was an all-day adventure. The pictures you’ll see with this post will be a small (very small!) selection of the many shots from those two days.
When I first interviewed for my job at AWF, I was told that I may, on occasion, be asked to travel to Africa for work. No one ever told me I’d be expected to go to Idaho, too. But there I was last Thursday, crawling out of my soft, warm bed and leaving my family at 5 in the morning to catch a plane to Sun Valley, Idaho. For work.