Friday, May 30, 2008

Breathing Break: Hakuna Simba!

Photos & text copyright Yasir Khan 2008

Willie and the other safari drivers in the Masai Mara were on edge for our first two days there. Nobody had seen a lion.

It's a safe bet that most people come to the Masai Mara to see lions. Hell, most people spend thousands of dollars on safaris, and if they don't see anything else except for lions, they will go home happy. Drivers like Willie take pride in finding lions for their clients.

It's hard to find lions in the spring, though - the Serengeti / Masai Mara grass is tall, and it rains frequently. So, for 2 nights, the talk at the drivers' dinner table centered around "hakuna simba." No lions. They took it personally.

But on the 3rd day, as we were wrapping up a giraffe, our CB radio began to squawk excitedly.

Kuja! (Look!)

Simba! Simba! Simba! Simba!

A mad rush across the Mara, with constant directions over the CB, led us to this big cat:

What I wasn't prepared for, were the paparazzi:

Photo copyright Sufia Lodhi 2008

For the next 45 minutes, camera shutters from 8 safari vans clicked with her every bored move.

The rest of the Mara thought we were the most ridiculous animals there. We barely noticed.

No comments: