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December 7th 2010
Published: December 7th 2010
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We arrived to the kind of heat which zaps our energy and renders us unable to think! Find our way to Shire Camp on the bank of the Shire river and near the barrage. Our room is wonderful..... About 15 ft. square and a high thatched reed roof and walls of bamboo canes and on three walls hung with heavy drapes in dusky gold and pinky maroon covers..... not designer you understand but I love it! And the bed is high off the shiney compact mud floor. It's basic and I feel at home... and knowing we will stay here for a week rather than constantly moving on.... that I like!
Have been a bit of a wimp about the little critters but getting better..... I'd be in a constant state of nervousness if I didn't get used to it! Here we have to zip up bags and check our shoes because there's all sorts to deal with! eg. the night the cat was watching a snake in the bar and I learned that with snakes the Africans ask no questions and waste no time. The kill them! We've seen some fabulous dragonflies and very big beetles that are a bit like overfed, disorientated bats when they fly into the light of your room.

The bigger animals we waited all week to see! The wonderful MV Mangunda was moored up at Billy's place, and owner Franc and his crew Hassan and Silence took a full quota of 8 of us on a Safari Cruise into Liwonde National Park. This is the most reasonable cost tour you can find at this time and Franc's cooking is superb! We were on the boat for 24 hours and lucky enough to see all we wanted to see...... Hippos in their thousands! Crocodiles, including a very big one, many different birds and Silence was very informative about them. And Elephants! I had an emotional reaction to our encounter with a herd of about 20 elephants..... all mothers and their offspring of various ages and sizes. Such gentle giants..... I think it was their protectiveness and gentleness which got me!

Will write more of Liwonde soon. Right now we are in an internet cafe which just isn't easy! Hoping this will send!


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