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Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

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salamanda
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Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:34 pm

I haven't written a TR since 2010 as far as I can see. Actually, I started one in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014. None of them was ever completed. So, because we are not going to Kruger this year and I have to survive on the vicarious pleasure of re-living last year's trip, I need to write it down and in order to make sure I do it, instead of writing it first and then posting (which REALLY didn't work), I'm posting as I write, so I really hope I won't embarrass myself by leaving it incomplete! We started in May; the drought was hitting hard, and we had no idea what we would see that was good or bad.


29 May

We arrive at Phabeni Gate late.

Image

Not too late, but later than we had hoped because we had to stop at a pharmacy in Nelspruit for some forgotten items. The pharmacy had moved . . . . Long journey that started at 3.50 a.m; heavy traffic; nearly taken out by a taxi, the driver of which appeared to be from some country that drives on the right. Until, that is, he was nearly flattened by an oncoming heavy and decided to rejoin traffic on the left. In our space. Now, at Phabeni we are in a queue. I’m always impressed by the efficient and courteous staff at this gate and Olivia is no exception as she meets, greets and explains the forms.
There is time to look at the bitter tea bush awash with fluttering African Monarch butterflies:


Image

Then we drive through the gate and are instantly transported into our own alternative universe where we shall dwell for the next two weeks. We are on drought alert but things don’t look so bad around here. A dry river bed, but plenty of vegetation and I’m not sure if this is because there are no animals left to feed or because the vegetation itself is not palatable. The grass itself is dry and brown. Our first birds are three Bateleurs in a tree – Dad, Mom and Jr. who looks a little browned off. . . . Then our first animal appears – a bull giraffe, quite dark and very tall. I am too tired to lift my camera. Soon we see vervet monkeys scattering across the road in front of us, then impala, white rhino and a couple of elephants moving quickly through the trees to somewhere. We begin to relax and decide that we have enough time to visit Shitlhave dam before we book in at Pretoriuskop. Here there are a lot of cars but not much to be seen; a waterbuck mom and her youngster parade slowly along the dam wall

Image


and after watching them for a while we drive into camp. The office is busy and there are quite a few complaints but the lady who deals with our booking is calm and composed and charming and wishes us a good stay. As we’re only staying one night, we had booked into one of the little huts with just two beds a fridge and a small basin and we have a Woollies ready-made prawn and avocado salad to eat. Initially we were going to sit outside and enjoy the evening as we ate, but in front of this little group of huts is a combi which has been driven onto the grass; doors and windows open; music blasting out at a level that precludes normal speech. This means that the group from the taxi, who are sitting around a braai can only communicate in loud shouts and screams. We hastily unpack what we shall need for the night and shut ourselves into our hut, but shutting the door doesn’t make much difference, and half way through our prawn and avocado salad (Woollies best, bought to save cooking) I give in and phone the duty manager. Some security guys are sent round but frankly they have little effect on the volume of noise. The music stops for an insulting five minutes but starts up again the minute they disappear. So we, who have been up since 2.30 this morning, turn on the very loud, rattly aircon (first time I've ever been thankful for an old, cranky aircon! :D ), make sure all the windows are shut, and finally fall asleep.

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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by umtali1 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:57 pm

It did occur to me whether we would see a TR from Salamanda :whistle: :hmz: :tongue: ..........
and now we have one :dance: :dance:

Definitely on board this bus (looks like I might be the first!) with all my supplies :popcorn: Image.
There's nothing quite like reliving a visit to compensate for withdrawal symptoms.

Great start :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:
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https://www.sanparks.org/forums/viewtopic.php?&t=93948

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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:26 pm

umtali1 wrote:It did occur to me whether we would see a TR from Salamanda :whistle: :hmz: :tongue: ..........
and now we have one :dance: :dance:

Definitely on board this bus (looks like I might be the first!) with all my supplies :popcorn: Image.
There's nothing quite like reliving a visit to compensate for withdrawal symptoms.

Great start :thumbs_up: :thumbs_up:


Umtali1 - good to see you on the bus - thanks for joining us! I know you won't be short of supplies! :lol:

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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by Philip1 » Mon Mar 20, 2017 8:24 pm

:hmz: They say, haste make waste :wink: , sooo rather late than never. :D
:dance: Looking forward to "Dawn Patrol", Salamanda and AnneS. :bcool: (Like what i see so far). :clap:
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by billyf » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:02 pm

As I am an early riser, so the Dawn Patrol suits me - may I join the bus??
Great start, pity about the noisy first night :roll:

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: :thumbs_up:
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by Mischief » Mon Mar 20, 2017 9:11 pm

This sounds like my kinda story,definitely on this bus Salamanda :popcorn: :popcorn:
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Mischief :P

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Karin Mitton
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by Karin Mitton » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:09 am

A bit of a noisy start, but fortunately only one night. I am sure it was not long before the quiet and tranquility of Kruger had you forgetting all about it!
Great butterfly photo

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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by Meandering Mouse » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:45 am

yay, a report from Salamanda :D

I really enjoyed your earlier reports and it is great to see that you have not lost your touch.

The prawn and avo Woolies salad is quite wicked. A most fitting start to a special stay. 8)

I am really looking forward to following this adventure. 8)

:popcorn:
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by Cape of Storms » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:53 am

Phabeni is a favorite of our to enter the park. Always quick and friendly. Sorry you had some rowdy neighbors! That spoils it a bit. Can't wait for more


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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:34 am

Philip1 wrote: :hmz: They say, haste make waste :wink: , sooo rather late than never. :D
:dance: Looking forward to "Dawn Patrol", Salamanda and AnneS. :bcool: (Like what i see so far). :clap:


Thanks Philip. This time I think its 'rather very late than never . . . . ' :D Good to see you on the bus!

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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:37 am

billyf wrote:As I am an early riser, so the Dawn Patrol suits me - may I join the bus??
Great start, pity about the noisy first night :roll:


Absolutely - so happy to have you aboard billyf. Yes, the noisy night was a bit of a downer, but I did send an email when I got back and we had some positive feedback which was great.

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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:39 am

Mischief wrote:This sounds like my kinda story,definitely on this bus Salamanda :popcorn: :popcorn:


Glad to see you Mischief, hope you enjoy the journey!

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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:41 am

Karin Mitton wrote:A bit of a noisy start, but fortunately only one night. I am sure it was not long before the quiet and tranquility of Kruger had you forgetting all about it!
Great butterfly photo


Welcome Karin, happy to see you. You're quite right about the tranquility; it never fails.

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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:44 am

Meandering Mouse wrote:yay, a report from Salamanda :D

I really enjoyed your earlier reports and it is great to see that you have not lost your touch.

The prawn and avo Woolies salad is quite wicked. A most fitting start to a special stay. 8)

I am really looking forward to following this adventure. 8)

:popcorn:



Thanks MM - both for being here and for remembering my (much) earlier TRs!

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salamanda
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Re: Dawn Patrol (The Late Late Show) with Salamanda and AnneS

Unread post by salamanda » Tue Mar 21, 2017 6:46 am

Cape of Storms wrote:Phabeni is a favorite of our to enter the park. Always quick and friendly. Sorry you had some rowdy neighbors! That spoils it a bit. Can't wait for more


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Welcome Cape of Storms. I so agree with you about Phabeni. There is a real vibe there, one that says 'we are going to make this the best gate in the park!' I love it.


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