The Reluctant Tourist (after "The Blue Room" by Suzanne Valadon)
       
     
Cheetah Napping After the Kill.
       
     
The Origin of Tiger Fish.
       
     
Royal Hotel, Riebeek-Kasteel, South Africa
       
     
Into Africa
       
     
Lemons on the Windowsill, Franschhoek
       
     
Julius Nyerere Airport @ Dar es Salaam
       
     
Dahala Camp Cabin on the Mnyera River, Tanzania
       
     
Dead Dead in the Delta Mud
       
     
Climbing Rose From the Orchard Cottage Rose Garden
       
     
Guinea Fowl and Other Magical Creatures of the Serengeti
       
     
Serengeti Ostrich Under a Starry Champagne Sky with Swarming Termites
       
     
Hammerkop and Malachite Kingfisher (with lunch) in Wild Iris
       
     
Dagga Boy Hosting a Yellow Billed Oxpecker
       
     
Luncheon Swim with the Gods
       
     
Dawn on the Serengeti
       
     
The Reluctant Tourist (after "The Blue Room" by Suzanne Valadon)
       
     
The Reluctant Tourist (after "The Blue Room" by Suzanne Valadon)

Returning to my khaki colored tent in the evening made me feel as if I stepped into a secret, safe chamber inside the body of “Serengeti”.

Cheetah Napping After the Kill.
       
     
Cheetah Napping After the Kill.

To me, the satiated cheetah looked as docile as a toy thrown to the ground by a child after a Serengeti themed tea party. 

The Origin of Tiger Fish.
       
     
The Origin of Tiger Fish.

Obba, the first wife of the river god Sango, was cast off in favor of another of his wives. She ran away into the wilderness and cried enough to fill a jar with bitter tears and when poured out, the tears changed river stones into ferocious Tiger Fish. The fearsome fish with large spiked teeth became Obba’s protectors from Sango forevermore. Original myth by Zan Mixter.

Royal Hotel, Riebeek-Kasteel, South Africa
       
     
Royal Hotel, Riebeek-Kasteel, South Africa

This classic, charming hotel is said to be the oldest hotel in South Africa. It is also home to many mounted beasts. It is unsettling to have them inside, dead on the wall, and walking around outside, alive, at the same time.

Into Africa
       
     
Into Africa

The hand written words at the top are the first line from the novel “Out of Africa” by Karen Blixin (Isak Dinesen). I listened to the book on tape while drifting off to sleep almost every night after seeing for myself all the marvelous places she wrote about.

Lemons on the Windowsill, Franschhoek
       
     
Lemons on the Windowsill, Franschhoek

We stayed at a South African wine country cottage that is as charming a setting as any…set among rows of espaliered plum trees that are eight feet tall. This window looks out to craggy mountain formations with descending fog rivers that make you wonder if you will be swallowed up and never found.

Julius Nyerere Airport @ Dar es Salaam
       
     
Julius Nyerere Airport @ Dar es Salaam

There is plenty of time to people watch at the airport. International travel affords the best mix of people, food, fashion, style and culture.

Dahala Camp Cabin on the Mnyera River, Tanzania
       
     
Dahala Camp Cabin on the Mnyera River, Tanzania

This is a very remote location and it has fabulous views of the barely touched bush country. The cabins are remarkable considering how far from civilization they are. The Tiger Fish in the rivers are prehistoric and scary huge.

Dead Dead in the Delta Mud
       
     
Dead Dead in the Delta Mud

Skulls litter the Serengeti plains. It is the essence of predation and at times I felt quite vulnerable myself.

Climbing Rose From the Orchard Cottage Rose Garden
       
     
Climbing Rose From the Orchard Cottage Rose Garden

There are beautiful, cheerful little roses blooming all around the sweet guest cottage. It is a sharp sense of contrast to the warnings not to leave the cottage after 10pm for your own safety.

Guinea Fowl and Other Magical Creatures of the Serengeti
       
     
Guinea Fowl and Other Magical Creatures of the Serengeti

There were so many strange creatures around that I had no trouble making up all the imaginary ways they were attacking me.

Serengeti Ostrich Under a Starry Champagne Sky with Swarming Termites
       
     
Serengeti Ostrich Under a Starry Champagne Sky with Swarming Termites

There is nothing quite like the wilderness, a chilled glass of fine champagne to toast the sunset, bright stars in the sky and a million swarming termites competing for air space.

Hammerkop and Malachite Kingfisher (with lunch) in Wild Iris
       
     
Hammerkop and Malachite Kingfisher (with lunch) in Wild Iris

If you look closely, you can discover tiny ecosystems and unexpected bursts of flora.

Dagga Boy Hosting a Yellow Billed Oxpecker
       
     
Dagga Boy Hosting a Yellow Billed Oxpecker

A solitary, old Cape Buffalo is resigned to the unrelenting pecks of his groomer.

Luncheon Swim with the Gods
       
     
Luncheon Swim with the Gods

We drove an hour from the fishing camp to a spot on the Mnyera River where we could swim and have luncheon set up along the riverbank. It was a beautiful scene and we felt like we were experiencing a serene African idyll until we realized the larger rocks in front of us were submerged hippos and we were, in fact, in a great deal of danger.

Dawn on the Serengeti
       
     
Dawn on the Serengeti

Life on the Serengeti is an implacable existence. I felt as if I stepped into a world to which I was not invited.