The Musings of a Mouse - January 2017
Updated: Mar 19, 2019
Nairobi – Kenya – Not a cloud in the sky.
Christmas eve – sitting under the Mogwooni rocks on Laikipia was such fun though we talked too much, sang carols – off key, too loudly – and definitely drank too much Christmas spirit!
On Christmas morning Charlie read us the statistic that most people consume 7,000 calories on Christmas day. So Milla, Peter the safari cook and I had great fun – smoked salmon and oysters for breakfast, stuffed turkey breasts in flakey pastry, crispy roasted potatoes, rich avocado salad and then Christmas pudding ice cream… You could say we achieved the national average!
We had New Year on safari with a wonderful family from Connecticut, and the gods really smiled down on us and showed us the most spectacular wildlife; a great way to start our year. Our only sadness was that we missed Sofia, who fell foul of Irish immigration laws, with her lovely blue Kenyan passport, but she now has it under control and has just been here for a week – so all is good again.
Last weekend, we were with Charlie near Mt Kenya, where he is building our new home (when not on safari) and listening to him explaining the financial benefits of selling cattle at the beginning of the drought, before they get skinny and die, to our Masai neighbours. It made me wonder if some kind of natural brakes on ever increasing cattle numbers in ever decreasing land areas isn’t part of a much bigger picture that we should be listening to. We need to find another way for a lot of our nomadic peoples to survive.
East Africa does seem to have recorded below average rainfall over the last 6 months, and in most parts of the country things are drying up. A bitter sweet pill – as always good for game viewing with less vegetation for cats to hide in but I think by late April, early May, when our next rains are predicted there will be a lot of very skinny animals.
My brother and sister in law just left Nairobi to run a lodge in Rwanda, so gorilla viewing is definitely on the cards for this year. It’s always such a challenge to be fit enough to get up and down the hills, and still have a steady hand for photographing the apes – nearly always in poor light but fascinating to watch. I can see I am going to have to start doing sit ups or something. We did watch a habituated troop of baboons in December, as they roosted in the rocks; such interesting social behaviour patterns.
Nairobi is at it best right now, and so calm and peaceful at home; apart from an infestation of piddling puppies, having had two bitches escape incarceration last year. Luckily they are so sweet so leaving for happy homes quite quickly!
I always wonder, at the beginning of each year, what it will bring for us and this year was no different. And apart from the obvious, (world peace, good health, and someone to keep a lid on Donald Trump and just let the good bits out) we hope for plenty more like minded people to find us and come on safari to have an incredible adventure and wildlife experience. It must be a good year, as happily for the elephants, the Chinese agreed to ban the sale of Ivory in China but the end of 2017.
We hope to see you all again soon.