Updated: Jun 18, 2021
"The wildlife and its habitat cannot speak. So we must and we will." - theodore roosevelt
Borana, Kenya. Wild. Endless. Wildlife haven. This reserve was probably one of the most beautiful ones I have ever been on, even now. We stayed with the owners in the most stunning lodge, with an incredible view surrounding us. Cody, the orphaned Kudu living there, decided from day one to follow us around, trying his naughty little tricks on us while we went on long walks with him or lie down close when we were sitting in the garden. He would come by to say hello every time we sat down to eat or snack (because he was able to break into the house)- you would hear the trip trap of his litte hooves even though he tried to sneak in most days- his foster mom kept on herding him outside, cursing him, while something would break- a glass, a plate or a bottle- she saw it coming and ended up having her hands full of Kudu while he managed to get his mouth or tail hooked on the above. He was simply too cute but he was getting close to adulthood, his little horns were growing fast and he needed to be outside with his own kind. A sanctuary was waiting to take him in when he was ready. So during his last days in Borana, he was becoming our little mascot and would put his nose everywhere that was not his business. During interviews you would hear his snorts in the background so you had to start over and over, every time, he would come and bump one of us (well mostly me) whenever he felt like it and of course Kim had her camera handy to take snaps or he would chase shadows when he was bored, sometimes running into the film frame. Early mornings (oh and it was freezing) and in the golden hours of the afternoons, we would get into our Land Rover and go for a long drive around to see who was roaming the savannah. I needed a loooong time to wake up, blinking rapidly during sunrise to help keep my eyes open (always colorful in Kenya) while downing at least three coffees. Of course my head was buzzing but I was actually able to take decent photos but hey let's not talk about the urge to use the bushes at times. Don't ask. I was still getting used to a lot of things and one of them was definitely getting up before the sun was smiling down on me. And I was still having the habit of working into the night, with twinkling stars above me, enjoying the quiet bushsong. We met grumpy black rhinos, huffing and puffing, elephants roaming the forests, gently chewing on grass and large herds of buffalo and zebra crossing the savannah- Mount Kenya was definitely the most dramatic backdrop.
Early evenings, my chaos sister and I were stepping into the footsteps of the rangers on the reserve and saw them off into the sunset as soon as they started their patrols. A smile, a wave and then only the song of the birds and rustle of leaves. (photos: bog photography, kimberly wood)