Just back from Tsavo, having spent an idyllic New Year’s day amongst the Ithumba orphans who were joined by all the Ex Orphans, including Mulika and her newborn baby Mwende, at the Ithumba Orphans’ mudbath venue, which, thanks to bountiful rainfall during November and early December, had been transformed into a lake. Back in Nairobi at the Trust Headquarters in Nairobi National Park, we had just been recounting to incredulous visitors the magic of this New Years day along with the regular presence of lions around our premises, even in broad daylight, bent on capturing a wild warthog amongst the many resident warthogs who look upon our premises as Home Base.
No sooner had the visitors left than nearby throaty roaring from two lions rattled the windows of our home. They were just below the Nairobi orphans’ mudbath which will be familiar to many Supporters. This awesome sound always causes a thrill along with a hush within the compound, particularly when from such close quarters.
Taru, Angela’s 13 year old son, played a recording of hyenas and jackals on a kill from his Ipod at the front door of his home, and two magnificent male lions, resplendent with full black manes approached with interest, causing Taru to rapidly close the door and retreat into the house. We all then decided to drive in the Landrover to take a closer look meeting one lion on the road behind the elephant stockades, taking a look at the elephant occupants who were already in for the night. We followed him as he walked along the road, his companion keeping pace in the bush at the right, until he decided to lie down and take a rest in the middle of the road just beyond the Visitors’ Carpark. So accustomed to the presence of a vehicle was he that he didn’t bat an eyelid, and allowed us to get right beside him, as a full moon rose in the East – surely an auspicious beginning on a magical night to herald the onset of year 2012.
We record this event for all our Supporters so that they too can share such a magical moment that we were privileged to witness on the evening of the 9th January, 2012 and wish them all a Very Happy New Year.