Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Safari Adventure

When one thinks of safari they can't help but have the soundtrack of "Lion King" play in their head. And the horror stories of people being trampled by elephants or eaten by lions always find a way of creeping into your mind (or maybe that's just me..). 

About a week ago, my family had the opportunity to go on a safari! We woke up around 6am on Sunday morning and we set off on the 3 hour drive to the safari. It was a chilly morning, we all cuddled up in the back as storm clouds grew closer as we drove. Suddenly rain began to pour, to the point where we couldn't see...if only we turned back then. We drove on and on, but the rain didn't let up. Reckless drivers passed us, sending waves of water crashing into our car. But at last it stopped raining, and the dull gray clouds hung in the sky as though to tease us.

We arrived at the park with a giant sigh of relief. As we drove in a sudden thrill ran down our spines. We saw warthogs, gazelles, cape buffalo, GIRAFFES, and weird little birds. We turned a corner about 2ish hours into the park and my dad yells out, "Elephant 12 o'clock!" We all craned out necks around the corner and there right in front of us on the road was a giant bull elephant! We had let some of the kids get on the roof of the car so they could get a better view, but when that elephant saw us, its ears flared up and it took one step towards us. My dad slowly backed up, letting the elephant see that we respected him, and then my dad jumped out of the car, got the kids in in record time and sped past the elephant (picture somewhere below :P)

About ten minutes after that we came to a Y in the road.  Now everybody always says take the narrow road in life not the wide one...does that really count when driving? Apparently so...because we took that wide welcoming road, and slid right over and were the middle of the safari..with no phone service...suddenly those horror safari stories creeped right back in...and the fact that a Ugandan had just told us that they have been seeing many lions in this area of the park wasn't helping the cause..So we sat there praying.

Then my mom realized that she had brought the other phone that we had gotten here and it had service!! So we called our friends and they called the UWA (Uganda Wildlife Authority)! The UWA said that they were coming to get us out, and it would only be 30 minutes...but 30 minutes here is 2 hours...and we had already been there for 2 we sat, thankful that we no longer had to fear  staying the night in the car. There was hope! Thankfully we had a family of giraffe to watch and we waited :) 

At last the UWA car turn the corner! I felt like Mia in Princess Diaries, whenever Joe shows up when she's caught in the rain :P Oh but it was wonderful!! So after 2 more long hours of pulling and getting another car to help, we finally got out!!!  AHHH praise the Lord!!!!!!!!! So the UWA called the gates and told them to keep it open because we had been stuck (the gates close at 7pm and they literally pulled our car out around 6:45), and we drove off! We were told that this was the worst that they've seen anyone stuck...that was a record we really didn't want to make, but since we did, sweet! Also a plus is that we saw hyenas, which everyone we've talked to says they haven't seen! So that was pretty cool :) But not really worth being stuck in the mud for 6 hours..
We arrived home at 11pm, and got in bed and slept great! Although everyone said they had weird dreams about safaris :P 

Now since you know our fun Safari story you'll understand why i didn't take that many pictures, but i did take some :)

Elephant in the road.

Cape buffalo in the distance
So beautiful!!

Cape buffalo
Monkeys :)

And then we got stuck....
Our family of giraffes!
And our beautiful view :)

All in all...we're not planning on going on a safari anytime soon...

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