"I'm going to speak my mind because I have nothing to lose."--S.I. Hayakawa

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Chapter Five

Caution:  Kids at Play 

We leave the lodge early in the morning for a short drive to the gate of Chobe National Park.   There are only 25 safari vehicles per day allowed in the park, and our driver/guide wants us first in line at the gate.   We are.

Many of us have brought bean bags to use for stabilizing our cameras on the window frames but haven’t had time to fill them.   The lodge personnel gave us towels as a substitute.

It’s still too dark for photos as Tonya steers the Land Rover along the dirt roads that show deep erosion after yesterday’s heavy rain.   We pass a large herd of impala and then reach the road that parallels the Chobe river.  I see a couple Marabou storks in the grass and then some more.

I am quite surprised as I thought they were solitary birds but as we watch more and more fly in.

A little farther down the road, we come upon a small pond with a lot of hippos in it.   Some of the youngsters are playing and they are a kick to watch.   I have never thought of these animals as playful.


On its back!

We start to leave and I realize I no longer have the towel the lodge gave me is missing and I wonder if I dropped it back where we had seen the impala.  Tonya turns the vehicle around and goes back.    It’s less than a quarter-mile but I feel awful and hope we find it.

We are greeted with the impala racing back and forth alongside us.   Quite a few safari vehicles arrive and pass us by, not realizing the antics of these small antelope.   Back and forth they run.

“Incoming,” says Guts every time the antelope turn and head back.   What a delightful way to start the day.

By now, the sun is higher than the vegetation and provides some nice backlit and rim lit photography.

The towel isn't where I thought it would be.   Then, I reach down between the seat and the door and there it is.    Now I don't feel so bad.   If I hadn't thought I'd lost the towel, we would not have seen this fun episode with the impala.

Finally, we decide to go on our way.  The storks are still gathering and I count 33 of them.

The hippos are still romping in their pond.


  1. The Hippo's look like they have smiles. The Antelope photos are fantastic.

  2. The Marabou Storks have quite the wingspan! Fun to see the hippos at play!! And, good that you misplaced your towel or you would have missed the back-lighting for the beautiful antelope photos. This WAS worth getting up early for!!! Smiles, Patti and Cap

  3. Photo 12 is a keeper. All four feet in the air. The small antelope are impalas. What a learning experience this all is. The hippos are a hoot. Cap and Patti