What happened when Hi-Fi drove an oryx into a fence
Last month was my birthday and I celebrated it in a relaxed and chilled way with friends – always a good thing! In the morning I watched a cheetah run and then went to the office to work for a couple of hours. I then went into town with some CCF staff for lunch, followed by a bit of shopping and then my first ever massage (full-body; it was amazing!). We then went home and I hung out with the Ambassador cheetahs for an hour before going to dinner, upon which I filled myself up on far too many chips and chocolate cake! After that we hung out in the common room watching Zombieland and chatting. All in all, a very nice day!
I now only have less than 2 months left at CCF – a slightly scary thought! To gout with a bang, I have booked a two-week trip across southern Africa at the end of my stay here. We will be travelling up Namibia to Zambia and visiting Victoria Falls on both sides (the Zambian and Zimbabwean sides), then heading down to Botswana to the Okavango Delta for a 4-day camping extravaganza. We then go further down the country to visit canyons, rivers and cross the border to South Africa where we head to my most favourite place on earth: Kruger! We will be spending a couple of days there and then head to our last stop on the trip, Johannesburg, where we will spend a few days chilling and recouping before my flight home to the UK! I am super excited about this journey and can’t wait to go :-D
It’s kind of strange to think that in 2.5 months I will be back in the UK again. This has been the longest time I’ve ever been away and I have to admit that there are a few things I am beginning to miss: Starbucks (!), going to the cinema/concerts/restaurants, visiting friends, having the freedom to do what I want when I want, cooking (I haven’t cooked a meal since August 2012 – what a strange concept!) and free healthcare (when you get as sick as often as I do, it is always worrying having to manage the finances of this in a country where you have to pay for healthcare!). Mostly I miss being able to have a life outside of work. It’s hard to socialise here and get away from CCF because we’re basically trapped here, so having a “real” life is almost impossible. Saying that, there will of course be oodles of things I’ll miss about Africa when I’m back in the UK – not least the beautiful sunrises/sets and the stars! At least I know I will be back again next year!
We had some eventful game counts last month: we saw a leopard, some aardwolves, an aardvark, loads of porcupines (one of which almost committed suicide by nearly running under the tyre of the truck!), a pair of Earthwathchers got rather scared by a troop of 30 baboons whilst out in a distant hide and we managed to get a flat tyre whilst driving home at night from the 12-hour waterhole count – oh dear! Also I’ve just been told that our resident wild male cheetah, Hi-Fi, was hunting an oryx last night right by the captive cheetah enclosures. He ran the oryx into the fence, breaking it down. The oryx dashed into the enclosure with 4 cheetahs inside of it, who proceeded to chase the poor thing around their pen. Somehow the oryx made a hole in the side of a fence adjoining another cheetah pen, letting two separate groups of cheetahs mix! The oryx eventually died and 5 cheetahs were found feeding upon it this morning! Never a dull moment here!!