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Kenya on Safari 2011
by Madelon Stevens

I had the great pleasure of traveling to Kenya, Africa in January of this year with a group of co-workers.
It started out with one woman wanting to travel there and quickly mushroomed into 5 of us. We went on a
holiday together. None of us really knew each other out of the workplace and it was quite a challenge to
organize the trip with all the different personalities involved.

I've wanted to visit Africa ever since participating in the National Geographic Genographic Project that is
attempting to track humankind on earth and their migratory route from the beginning of time to modern
day. My DNA analysis indicated that I shared markers with "Mitochondrial Eve" who lived in East Africa
40,000 years ago. Once I knew that, it was a burning desire to travel there and experience the land for
myself. It was a trip of a lifetime and I strongly encourage others to do the same.

We crisscrossed Kenya prior to the safari on the Masai Mara and had many wonderful encounters with the
locals. Everyone speaks English and were so friendly and welcoming it was almost overwhelming. They
were so thankful for the littlest things. There are many great needs in that country but the population
is so happy and positive. Big white toothed smiles everywhere you look.

Schooling is hugely important with most parents wanting the best for their children. Our safari was on
the Masai Mara which is the extension of the Serengeti in Tanzania into Kenya. We booked with a private
company and were treated like royalty. 11 men to look after 5 nurses! We stayed in tents on the bank of
Taluk River with a dining tent, sleeping tents, shower tents, and of course toilet tents.

The lions roared all night, the hyenas whooped and laughed, the elephants bellowed, the hippos snorted.
I found the night sounds soothing and strangely comforting. I was never in fear. We had two Masai brother
warrior guards, David and Jacob, armed with a spear and and bow & arrow. They kept us safe every night.
We got up early every morning and went out looking for wildlife by 6:30 am, returning at noon for a meal,
an afternoon nap and tea, then back out on the savannah for an evening safari ride.

We saw all the big 5 except the elusive black rhinoceros. We only saw his tracks but even that was a
thrill. I would go back to Kenya in a New York minute. I loved it all and was disappointed having to return
home when the time came. We made many new friends and acquaintances and are still keeping in touch.

I kept a travel journal of every day of the trip but, unfortunately, it disappeared out of my backpack at
the airport security check in the Nairobi airport on our return. That is the only negative incident I
experienced in the 26 day African adventure.

The name of the safari company, we were fortunate enough to book with, is Robin Hurt Safaris. I highly
recommend them to anyone wishing to experience a real African safari. Their motto is, "Days in the bush,
nights under canvas".

Mouse McConnell - Robin Hurt Safaris,
P.O. Box 24988,
Karen 00502, Nairobi, Kenya
Office Tel: (25420) 3882826 / 3884068, (254733) 333493 - Mobile (254722) 281055

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