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Sunday, July 13, 2014

Zambia, A Scenic Arrival

 

From Nairobi we board Kenya Airways for a non-stop flight to Livingstone, Zambia.

 

2005-01-01 13.23.00Besides distant views of the highest mountain in Africa, Kilimanjaro, we get a close up and personal view of Victoria Falls on our arrival into Livingstone, Zambia.

This was all made possible by an awesome Kenya Airways Captain.

 

 

 

 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Kenya, A Brief Visit

 

 

Despite warnings to avoid travel to Kenya, we decide to “YOLO” and make a brief visit to Nairobi as a part of our African vacation.

A friendly welcome from an Immigration official and sixty dollars later we have three transit visas for 72 hours. Before long we are driving the streets of Kenya and making our way to a local hotel with the help of an employee from our rental car company riding shotgun.

 

IMG_0139Checked into our hotel we are soon off to an elephant orphanage.

A lunch break at a mall that has airport type security and military soldiers walking around with guns then it is back to the streets of Nairobi.

 

 

Missing unmarked speed bumps turns out to be fun as every now and then we go airborne as I fail to see them in time to slow down. A few stops for what seems like misguided direction and we end up at the Giraffe Center.

 

IMG_0151Here we learn about our long necked friends and I don't miss the opportunity for a “Giraffe Kiss”.

 

 

 

 

 

A somewhat personal tour of the property and we get to spend sometime with a few race winners. Seeing their top speeds I just don’t know how they win every time against the hare.

 

 

IMG_0159African Leopard Tortoise

 

 

IMG_0003Back in our hotel neighborhood it is time for dinner.

At a local restaurant we have uagli (a cornmeal staple), roasted goat leg and cold beers as we join a few locals to cheer on Ivory Coast in their World Cup match against Greece.

 

 

 

IMG_0013Although our visit was brief we look forward to returning to Kenya and hope its internal turmoil will only get better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sunday, July 6, 2014

United Arab Emirates, Some Desert Fun

 

On an early June afternoon it is still over 300 degrees when we are picked up from our hotel in a Toyota Landcruiser.

A drive across a landscape almost void of meaningful contrast and about forty five minutes later we are watching a caged camel enjoy a refreshing drink of bottled water.

 

2004-12-31 19.14.26For three dirhams I attempt to quench my thirst but I do not think I have as much fun or get as much satisfaction from my bottled water as my new humpback friend.

 

 

After a short break we are back in the Landcruiser this time with seat belts on and slightly deflated tires. In less than half a mile we begin one of the reasons we are back in Dubai and that is to share the “Dune Bashing” experience with our son.

 

 

2014-06-23 18.49.41

 

 

Driving up then sometimes sliding down mounds and mounds of sands the excitement reaches levels of screaming and “OMG" that is so much fun. At one point it all comes to a stop as we watch a Dubai desert sunset.

As night falls we make an almost normal drive across the desert to sort of a camp. Here we make a failed attempt at “Sand Boarding” then it is a free camel ride before dinner and some local entertainment.

If I could have gotten my belly dancing moves perfected this experience would have been worth a lot more than the bargain price of just US$50 per person.