"In the jungle..."

Well...March 20th-23rd, 2010 will forever be remembered as some of the best days on earth.  We got to spend those days at a private game reserve next to Kruger National Park in South Africa. We got to get up-close and personal to the amazing wildlife...and we mean CLOSE. Like, pee your pants a little cause there are lions right next to your car...Or in Kate's case--pee your pants cause there are spiders the size of baseballs EVERYWHERE. It scared her more than the lions did. Each day we went for morning and evening drives, bush walks, bike rides and ate some fabulous food under the big, bright African stars. Because we are cheesy awesome, we named our group/car "Lady Dagaboy" and our guide was a guy named Dave (aka Captain Kittycat) and our tracker was Clemont (aka Clementine). Seriously, these two macho men were not only cute as can be but they had some of the best personalities ever....we laughed, we sang...they wore bow ties...we wore formal wear...haha...good times all around :) The best part too was that my (Kate's) dad was with us. He pretty much thought he was Rambo the majority of the time which was very entertaining.

Here are some small highlights from the trip:

  • The first morning drive we almost drove straight into this huge spider web that stretched across the road and Kate screamed the most girlish, bloody murder scream at the top of her lungs. Pretty funny.
  • The last day during our drinks at sunset, Dave and Clemont brought bow ties to put on and we brought something "sparkly" and formal to throw on over our grubby safari clothes...we wanted to have some class...the pictures will explain :)
  • We parked the car, walked about 10 minutes through the bush to get super close to two giraffes. Kate was almost paralyzed with fear at how close we got to the spiders but it was still awesome!
  • The last night they set up dinner for us on the landing strip out in the middle of the bush. There were about 50 million candles everywhere...it was gorgeous!
  • We pretty much used the Lion King and its soundtrack to reference all animals and preceded to sing a song that corresponded as well at any time we could. We sang A LOT in our car.
  • We all wore ribbon headbands on the second day to show some group unity and to bring the awesome animals our way...it totally worked too...the animals couldn't stay away!
  • We drank LOTS of Amarula...you can't get this stuff in America so we had to have as much as possible...they even put it in our hot chocolate in the morning :) I know...it was like heaven.

Anyway...here are some pics. Disclaimer: we all shared our pictures so most of the awesome shots we probably didn't take...so a big thank you to all our friends who shared their pics :)

The gorgeous African sky.

The sun...setting or rising...not sure...but beautiful either way!

So peaceful.

Safari vehicle fun!

Elephant up close & personal.

Rhino.

Lady Dagaboy in action taking pics of a hyena.

Leopard about to climb the tree.

Up he goes.

Dinner time...eating an Impala. We could literally hear the bones crunching.

The best tracker EVER...Clement!!!

Clement & Kate chasing the Impala to make them jump for people taking pictures. Woohoo!

Hippo under the water.

Hippo out of the water.

Zebras have BFF's too.

That's right. Worst nightmare.

Terrible. Horrible. Awful. They were huge.

My dad taking pics :)

Our rockin' guide Dave.

Stop the car. Whip out the tablecloth. Pour the wine and Amarula. Check.

Lions.

Lions in a tree stealing food from the Leopard up above them. Freaking UNREAL.

Bike ride through a little lake.

Mud everywhere. Knife in my hand. Gun in his. We were ready for anything.

Mama Elephant with her two kiddos drinking at sunset.

Another Elephant. Sweet.

Wild Dog.

Leopard. You could almost reach out and touch him.

He loved his pink ribbon.

Ribbons represent.

We busted out the formal wear and were welcoming the other group.

Formal wear in the field.

Haha..nothing wrong with a little attitude in the bush.

RAAAAR!!!!!!

Giraffe

We got that close...it was unbelievable.

Chameleon love.

River we drove through.

There we are...driving through.

Lion tracks we found during our bike ride...awesome.

Wine tasting :)

Dinner under the stars.

Cape Buffalo.

Blown away by what we were seeing...cameras ready!

Last group shot...Dave let my dad hold the gun...my dad was SO happy...haha!