Quiet Ride to a Tamer World
Nairobi Travel Blog› entry 49 of 81 › view all entries
We lingered around the morning fire for much longer than usual. None of us really wanted it to go out. After slowly packing camp, we began the quiet ride toward a tamer world. As our Landrover down-shifted up the eastern escarpment we gazed out over the Great Rift Valley and contemplated our two weeks in the African bush.
Though we had not witnessed a ferocious kill by a lion, the massive wildebeest herds in annual migration, or a thundering stampede of raging cape buffalo, we had perceived the delicate biological balance of nature that had existed for millions of years. We saw the many species of graceful gazelles, the larger antelopes with their majestic horns, the wildebeest, zebras, giraffes, and massive pachyderms all grazing peacefully, often side by side, in their struggle to survive in a dry and barren wasteland. None would exist without the predators to control their populations by weeding out the sick and weak. Only the strong and healthy survived. Scavengers neatly cleaned up leftovers of the fallen ones, preventing the spread of disease. We all knew that the experience would carry with us for the rest of our lives. Scott and I had each photographed more than fifty species of wild animals and birds.
It was 1:45 in the afternoon when our dusty Landrover rolled to a stop at the post office in Nairobi. Ed and the Australians went inside to get precious mail while Scott and I collected ours at the American Express office. Mail from home was always a thrill; a nice morale booster, especially after finding ourselves back in the city. We were dirty and unshaven when Ed dropped us at the Nairobi Youth Hostel.
Scott and I ran into Ken at the hostel, the American scientist who we had met on Lamu. He was leaving for Austria that night so, after cleaning up, we went to the Grovsnor Hotel with him for a fine three dollar mixed-grill and a couple of White Cap beers. Afterwards, Scott and I walked to Stoley's apartment, then to the PanAfric. Both Stoley and John were out of town.