Because of its proximity to the Jomo Kenyatta airport, we returned to the Nairobi Tented Camp before flying back to the States. It felt full circle, returning to our starting point. By now, after more than 20 game drives, we felt like “old hands” and the camp was familiar…yet, this last day had a sad quality to it. Luckily, a few things happened to lift our spirits.
Elephants and rhinos
We made another visit to the Sheldrick Wildlife Trust elephant orphanage. The baby elephants never fail to delight. They are so cute marching in from the forest — single file, trunks swinging — for their evening feeding and mud bath.
Maxwell makes his mark
Then I had a personal encounter with Maxwell, the resident black rhino. He is blind and I was trying to get his attention, tapping on his enclosure, hoping he’d come over. He responded by backing up and spraying urine all over my leg. I was blessed!! Back at the camp, the staff washed my pants for me, I think twice, to get the “fragrance” out.
Rhinos in the wild
Of the Big Five game animals (lion, leopard, rhinoceros, elephant, and Cape buffalo), we had seen very few of the local white rhinos. On our very last game drive, as we were returning to the camp, we hit a bonanza: a mother and her calf were blocking our road! They crossed and waddled up on an embankment to pose for pictures. A perfect ending to a wonderful trip.
But did you know? There is also a group of animals called the Ugly Five. They are the hyena, wildebeest, vulture, warthog and the marabou stork. We saw all but the stork.