Camp life (part 2/2)

In the hotter months (August – November) one feels the need for a short siesta after lunch. It is very uncommon for it to rain here during the dry season so, fortunately, humidity is kept at bay, but on the other hand, there is dust and a lot of it.

The climate of South Luangwa

At 15h30 cake and tea is served next to the river. This is also the gathering point before heading out on the evening/night game drive. If there is space available and I feel I am ahead of pre- and post-flight paperwork, fueling etc. I will join on a game drive. This time of day is golden in the Luangwa Valley. The sun is low creating a warm light, the temperature is just right and the animals are coming out to hunt. Here’s a few pictures of my latest game drive.

The Vine snake was actually in camp, right next to the kitchen. We don’t see them often and gladly so, because it is highly venomous (can easily kill a human) and there is no anti-venom for this kind of snake.

Once the sundowners are finished, and the sun has set,  the nocturnal animals, as do the spotlight come out. It surprises me what a stark contrast of animals one sees just as it becomes dark. Genet, Elephant shrew, Hyenas, Bushy and White-tailed Mongoose and if you’re lucky, a Leopard and/or a pride of Lions.

We arrive back at camp at approximately 19h45. Guests get ready for dinner and gather at the bar to share stories of any action that may have happened during the game drive. Part of my duty is to be the barman and host a table of guests every other night. People are often surprised to see the pilot behind the bar counter! It is always a very pleasant candlelit dinner in the open under the night sky with all sorts of animal noises within hearing distance. To be seated with at least three nationalities and sharing great stories is always fascinating. Incredibly interesting people come to visit Tafika, among others we’ve had professors, doctors, CEO’s and various others from all walks of life. Dinner is concluded with tea and coffee and I walk the guests back to their chalet’s. Another day in the South Luangwa done and dusted.

Graceful stretch – Pink-nose