To continue from my last post, the next sighting of the day was a leopard. Right in front of our eyes it came out from a bush. We couldn't let it get away so easily so we drove our jeep quietly to block its path. The leopard looked at us and everyone excitedly got out their cameras. It was like it was posing for us. We exspected that was it; we thought it would run away now. Leopard sightings usually only last a few seconds. Its sleek fur was glistening in the sunlight. To our surprise it started to walk towards our jeep. It was gorgeous as it strode past us. Once it got close it walked straight beside the jeep and then turned to go around the back. It was so close we could've touched it. But I doubt anyone would've wanted to. Even after its face was out of veiw, we still watched it prance away its gleeful tail swaying behind it. All we could see as it disapeared into the bush was the black tip of its tail. Then we lost it. Our guide was more suprised at the events so far then we were. He had no clue how we lucked out so much in one drive. Not just the sighting but the length of time. We must've watched it for 2 minutes. You can bet that all of us were overjoyed it wasn't shy. We drove away happy people. Everyone grinning at the spectacle we had seen.
But that's not all. With only minutes in our game drive we expected nothing more. Neither did our guide. But to our suprise on the left hand side, there was a male and female lion basking in the sun. They were CLOSE. We couldn't believe it. Seeing one cat in a drive is special but seeing 6!?!?
The lioness was sleeping soundly and aparently we did not change anything. But the male was sitting proudly with his head up. He looked straight at our jeep with his yellowy gold eyes. His full mane framed his face perfectly. The pictures could have come out of national geographic we were so close to them. Not only that but they were in the wide open. Seeing as they are the top of the food chain around there, they have nothing to worry about.
We wished we could've stayed longer but we had a plane to catch so we sadly waved good bye to the lions and headed back to our lodge to start yet another adventure in Africa.
But as we were turning in, our guide turns to us and asks us not to leave. We give him a confused look and then he clarifies " You brought us all the animals, I haven't had that great a drive in years!" We smiled and said goodbye and thank you! And in the morning there I was thinking of sleep! That just shows that you should never skip a game drive when a lion might be on the line!
by Jamie Gibson