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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so..... 2012

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Mon Mar 05, 2012 10:55 am

Don't know where this pack is from, but strongly suspect they are denning with pups in this area at the moment as they seem to staying around.

Last night was definitely special!

Tonight I am doing security for the bush braai, so sightings will be less.....
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Tue Mar 06, 2012 10:20 pm

Had a good meal last night, and no drama or problems at the bush braai.

But.....after I had gone to bed.....TWANG - a noisy ellie I had heard on the river side of camp as I came in decided it was time to break into camp next to my caravan. No marulas about, so do not know what attracted him. I chased him, he came back, I chased him, he came back......and eventually I just gave up. In the morning the top strands of wire were broken again, several posts looked drunk and disorderly, and there was another trampled down area of fence next to my car. Vandalphant.....!

This evening I did a night drive for BnD again. Very quiet, but still impalas, scrub hares, duiker, hippos, hyenas, zebs, nightjars and spotted eagle owls, plus an ellie (well behaved). Carefully parked the vehicle to block the broken part of the fence, and hope for no trouble tonight!
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

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If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Sun Mar 11, 2012 7:37 am

Busy week getting ready for the Cricket, and at the office preparing for a Shooting practice and assessment and Parks Heritage course happening the week I get back from my break. Lots of printing and preparation of handouts etc..... But all done in time.

Wednesday evening I was asked to do a night drive for BnD - but as I was driving out of the gate they called to say the guests had cancelled. I was grateful as it meant a little more time to get ready to leave for Skuks on Thursday.....but still had a rush in the morning anyway, as there was a bit of admin around camp.....

But eventually I was off to Skukuza - and once there quickly off-loaded my cold-box at my accommodation in the Vet Camp, and then had errands to do around the offices. By lunch time I was done and had the rest of the day free. I found that there was nobody else booked into Vet Camp - so a peaceful weekend there at night.

Found a few 'mites on Thursday afternoon - DB and Hawk, Ned, Steven, Sparrow - and some of the SANparks team.

Friday morning I headed back to the main camp to find out what I was needed to do - and found Frikkie talking with DB, JenB and Sparks. So glad we managed to sort out the equipment the anti-poaching so desperately needed!

Back to Vet Camp to do some laundry (I brought it with me!), and later back to main camp to help with sorting out t-shirts and name tags for the braai. During the afternoon there was a practice for the Angels playing cricket the next day. I was given the ball to try bowling.......and promptly extended the concept of a 'wide' by almost 240 degrees! The ball would not go where I wanted it to go - not overarm or underarm throwing!!!! Diplomatically I was told 'you are not a bowler'!!!!! Batting was a little better and I did connect with the ball a few times. The evening was good - meeting up with lots of 'mites again.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Sun Mar 11, 2012 7:49 am

Saturday morning I was up early, and off to the Cricket gounds. I knew I had to get the Silent Auction things sorted out before the start of the matches...... Only Frikkie was already at the grounds getting the pitch ready for play and setting out the boundary markers.

I pulled tables about, and started to set out the few bits I had, and soon others arrived. Help was at hand and several folk were soon putting out items, attaching labels for the bidding, etc. Thanks to all who helped (no names as I know I will end up forgetting to list someone - but you know who you were!!!).

Then a quick bit of catching practice (and I did manage to throw the ball straight back to the hitter this time). We had to field first, and I was stationed behind the bowler (where I had least to do, and so would probably not have to throw much!). It came to the 2nd last over......and Geocor was wondering who to ask to bowl when somehow I ended up with the ball!!!!!!

And amazingly I managed to throw the first one straight down the pitch! Incredibly my accuracy lasted the whole over with no 'wides' at all - and 2 wickets with successive balls (sorry Nedret!!!!) :big_eyes: :big_eyes:

Lesego and Roaneric were our heroines for the batting, and I did not even get to try that! We won!!!! First time in 6 years...... My first cricket-playing experience ever and I was on the winning side. Wonderful!

The Silent Auction was a disappointment as bids were low, and interest low too. It may be that this has run its course and we must think of something else - but also there were not many 'mites who stayed around the Cricket grounds either.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Sun Mar 11, 2012 7:56 am

Packed up after the close of the Auction and headed back to shower and change for the dinner at the Golf club.

Got there early and helped Roaneric put out the keyfobs she had made (very cheerful and varied).

The evening was wonderful.....Frikkie gave a good talk about rhino poaching with lots of information - and some emotion packed in. The food was good. Prize-giving a huge surprise - I got a trophy for being the best bowler - hey??????? :redface: :shock:, and a medal for playing! Lesego was the best all round player :clap: , and PetraJ the best batter :clap:

Back to Vet Camp late, and very tired as I had not slept well the previous night. Slept very well, and now ready to have something to eat, pack up and return home to prepare for leaving tomorrow for my week away! Hope to get the car virtually packed up this evening so there is little to do in the morning. I will even put the mini-freezer in with an extension lead to keep it cold overnight.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Sun Mar 11, 2012 8:27 am

Sometimes I think I took the wrong career path - I became a nurse and went into Neonatal Intensive Care...... a career in the bush was not even a vague thought! It was only after (being forced into) early retirement and returning to SA that I became bush-orientated......did courses to learn more.....became a guide and then an HR.....and ended up here in Kruger as a full-time volunteer. An incredible impossible undreamt of dream!
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:17 pm

Back at the caravan now, and almost sorted out ready for tomorrow, so I can take it easy this afternoon now. Even have a chop left over from Friday's braai, so will heat that up and some veges and have that for an early supper (after some ice cream!).

It is hot, but windy with a lot of clouds about.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:56 pm

Monday morning I left Malelane gate at about 0830 - a bit later than I had wanted to - and headed for the N4. A bit of shopping, and a visit to the post office, and 2 hours later I was back in Kruger.......

A busman's holiday I guess!!!!! Drove in at Croc Bridge (was stopped by the head guide wanting me to help with activities next week as City will be away.....!) and headed for Maroela camp. I have 6 nights here, in a peaceful, shady camp where I can just chill out if I want and look out over the dry river bed (although there is a little water visible from my camp site) or go out for a drive.

I hoped I would be incognito.......but the manager saw the HR stickers on my car when I stopped at reception to check in and asked if I was here to help! And the man who checked me in was one of the guides who has attended the Orientation course I help with...... I did say I was here for a HOLIDAY! My first proper week off in all of the 3 years I have been here!

On my way up to Maroela I saw Elsa and co on their way out of the park, another yellow ribbon flew past me later on.

Sightings wise......ellies, zebs, wildebeest, impala, rhinos, buffalo herd, lions on a kill near Lower Sabie, leopard in a tree just past that, warthog, more lions, waterbuck, chameleons, leopard tortoise, slender mongoose, dwarf mongoose, banded mongoose, bushbuck, nyala......and lots of birds too. It was a good trip - but my camera batteries gave in, the spares did not work.....and then after I quickly stopped to buy some more, the memory card was full and the spare would not work...... All sorted out now though, but too late for the trip up.

It took me a couple of hours to get set up - but that was mainly because I did it leisurely rather than rush and get too hot. Had the honey badger snuffling around the tent a lot during the night!

Yesterday I went to Moholoholo to visit friends there, so it was not a 'park' sightings day (very cute 9 week old rhino calf....).

Today I stayed in camp. Did laundry from the Cricket weekend, and cooked a big lunch. Watched vervet monkeys have a squabble - 2 males maybe fighting over leadership of the troupe.... and 2 squirrels chasing about and mating every time they stopped running! An ellie visited the river bed late afternoon, and a bushbuck was also there in the morning.

Tomorrow, if I still feel like it in the morning, I may go for a drive.....but may also just stay put again. It is nice not to have to do anything!!!!

Stephen Nel called me yesterday afternoon to ask where I was......a storm went through Malelane and the shade net over my caravan has been blown almost completely off. He said the caravan was still standing.....and looks as if all is OK. He had a lot of problems to deal with because of the storm, but said he would try to remove the shade net for me. So when I get back on Sunday guess what I need to do.......

We had some strong wind, and a storm last night here, but no problems.....the tent and car are cleaner too!
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:36 am

I ended up coming home a day early!!!! Somehow I don't seem to be cut out for sitting around doing nothing.....and could not afford the fuel to do too much driving around. Also the camp began to fill up, and the 'human hyenas and lions' made me angry!!! They even tried a couple of hyenas whoops in the night - but always the same call and same volume from the same place..... I just decided that rather than get too upset about it all I would pack up and come home.

It meant that yesterday which was a bit cooler was a good day to sort out the shade cloth - and although it is not as I would like, it is at least over the caravan and tent again providing protection.

This will be a very busy week - I am going up to Skukuza this afternoon to help with shooting practice and assessment the next 3 days, and then on to a Parks Heritage course through to Sunday. After that an easier week although there is still marking to do from the last Orientation course, and there will be stats and a report to do from the shooting assessment.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Fri Mar 23, 2012 12:02 pm

Had to go where I could afford to go.......! But maybe will try to go somewhere different sometime.....

Got to Skuks about an hour before gate closing time eventually. Found myself in comparitive luxury in one of the biggest huts in the Research camp - and for the rest of the week!

Next 3 days were spent going out to the shooting range at 0600 and returning mid-afternoon. 2 days of practice, one of assessment. Saw lions, elephants, hippos, hyenas, kudus, impalas, bushbuck, warthogs, mongooses (dwarf, slender, banded). A herd of impala entertained us on the range at one point bounding about in apparent play. Have to watch for hyenas if walking about in the camp.....

Yesterday 4pm the Parks Heritage course started - mostly guides attending which is great as they can pass on so much information to guests in the future. My role is really just to keep things running smoothly and trouble-shoot.

Back home again on Sunday......and then more marking etc next week.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Wed Apr 04, 2012 5:04 am

Not sure where time goes these days!!!

Couple of trips last week - one where the vehicle would not start after stopping to watch rhinos! Flat battery! Fortunately near enough to BnD to have cell phone signal, and Stephen Nel came out to help. The guests thought the whole adventure was a bonus!!!!!

Last night I did a night drive - and had a family of 4 who have had good sightings while here, and said wistfully they needed to see lions. I gave them 6 walking with us on the road and playing together! Also called Peter and Patrick so they were able to share them with their guests too.

Also had ellies, rhinos, and a buffalo on the road shortly before getting back to camp, so only needed a leopard to make it full house. No spotted eagle owls for the first time for ages......several nightjars and scrub hares, fewer impalas than usual, duikers, good sighting of a civet, bushbabies, and a few unidentified 'eyes'.

Just as I got back Raymond sent an sms asking me to do a morning walk - I was tempted to ignore the message but he was waiting for me and twisted my arm into agreeing.......so up early this morning ready to be picked up to go on the walk with Peter.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Wed Apr 04, 2012 9:09 pm

The walk was good - stalked some giraffes but they saw us coming and disappeared. Ellies in the distance while we had our snack.

Was booked for a night drive tonight, but Raymond called and changed it to a sunset drive. Had full vehicle, and rather noisy group, but pleasant. Took tar road to Timfenene and then back on tar roads, and took it real slow after dark.

Ended up with big 5 night plus hyenas twice and impalas, scrub hares, nightjars, and side-striped jackal, plus lots of giraffes.

As I got to the tar after Timfenene we heard hyenas, and as I turned we saw them (already had 2 on the loop itself) and immediately saw a leopard in the road a little further on! It allowed a good sighting, but not good photos as it walked ahead of us and then into the grass next to us. A lone buffalo was further down the road.

Saw Peter on the night drive just after that and he asked for the lions (well I did call him to see them last night!) and I said they were gone. Got to the S114 junction and turned to the open area to check for hippos and found one male lion in the road asleep with his friend lying a bit further on in the grass! Alerted Peter who came and saw them too (he now owes me big time!).

Back at the s-bend before camp there were more lions in the road - this time 8 of them!!!!! They headed off into the grass almost immediately hunting, and Solly was just in time behind me to see them disappear. The jackal was just after that!!!!

Oh - and a special and unique sighting........a road-block with army folk, protection services, 2 helicopters, and sniffer dog checking cars!!! :clap: :clap:

Did get a clap when we got back to camp!

Now need to get some sleep before another walk in the morning.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Thu Apr 05, 2012 6:22 am

Inconsiderate campers near me kept banging car doors last night until very late......and I was tucked up in bed and it was too much of an upheaval to get dressed and go and tell them off, especially as each time might have meant they were settling down at last!

Then got to BnD this morning to find that Raymond had made other arrangements and I was not needed anyway :wall: :wall: But I did find the 2 male lions from last night walking towards BnD, and then the pride of 8 lions near the old bush braai turning also walking towards BnD. When I drove home again the pride had disappeared, and the males were just leaving the tar with Patrick watching them (with 2 guests from the gate going to join Raymond and BnD guests for the walk).

So now going to get back into bed and try to catch up on zzzzzzzzzzzzzz's. Busy weekend ahead.....
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Thu Apr 05, 2012 11:06 am

Had some sleep. See noisy folk will be here tonight as their little tent is still here. They will be told that not even a squeak must come from them after 2130 tonight! And also be reminded that they were given a permit which clearly stated 'conditions of entry' when they came in, and they are expected to read it and obey.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!

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Goggo EJ
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Re: needed a (permanent?) fix so.....

Unread post by Goggo EJ » Fri Apr 06, 2012 6:31 pm

The noisy folk arrived back in camp about lunch time and then packed up and left!!!! Last night camp was not actually full - I suspect some of 'our' campers had decided to go elsewhere after checking in. Unfortunately not easy to police unless I am able to do a check, and then the missing folk are tracked down. It will happen one night and then some folk will get a nasty and expensive surprise when they reach next camp or gate or get home.......

A late sms last night from Raymond told me not to worry about the bush braai tonight, so I have been let off the hook - not too sorry as it will be an early start at the gate again tomorrow anyway. Today was busy to start with, then quietened down, but got busy again late morning.

Tomorrow I will have a sunset drive as well as morning gate duty - Isaac asked me on Wednesday if I would do the drive as they already had extra bookings.

Tonight had to call BnD maintenance folk over as someone alerted me to the fact that the bath hot water tap in the ladies' ablution block was not working. It had been leaking a bit, and was now jammed off. That left only one shower for the ladies, and a full camp - not a good idea!!!! It has been temporarily repaired, and will be replaced tomorrow when there is more time.

After that had a chat with some campers about the animal night life around camp as we watched the bushbabies tight-rope walking on the telephone wires and beginning to chase insects at the light at the camp gate.
Smiling is contagious. Start an epidemic today!

Have you read the entrance permit? Do you KNOW the Conditions of Entry?

Completed over 7 years in Kruger in my caravan.

If I was normal I wouldn't be me!


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