After a lengthy 9 hour airplane ride from Paris to Nairobi, our first stop was going to be Lake Nakuru.
I have to admit, out of all the places we stayed on our 8 day adventure, the Sarova Lion Hill Game Lodge was my favourite.
The rooms were cozy and comfortable (they were also suited with free wifi!). It was nice to just drop our bags and relax after our long travels.
When it was time to eat, the dinner buffet was so bountiful– I could have eaten there for the rest of my life! They had designated a special seat for Brandon and I and a very talented man with a guitar serenaded us with romantic pop hits. It felt like a dream!
After dinner we were invited to the evening entertainment which included traditional Kenyan dancing. Of course, when they asked for volunteers to join them on stage, Brandon and I couldn’t say no, so we both got new dancing partners and learned the dances. The next day, people came up to us and complimented us on our dance moves– which was surprising as my dance moves are… “unique”.
Admittedly, when we booked our Safari, I was nervous. Not because it was so exotic, or so culturally different, but because I was worried we wouldn’t see any animals. Our friends had shown us their spectacular pictures and I thought they were so lucky to see such natural beauty. I thought to myself, “I will be lucky and happy to see one lion”. I even tried to nonchalantly push down Brandon’s expectations, just in case his dreams of seeing a lion would not get fulfilled.
Our driver told us the time of our first “Game Drive” in which we would go and look for animals. I packed my new camera which was all charged up, an extra battery just in case, and was mentally ready for anything. I had high hopes, but low expectations.
We clamoured in the safari truck, and set off into the wilderness and boy, was I shocked! We saw all sorts of animals: zebras, buffalo, giraffes, even a rhino.
After a couple hours out in the park, it was time to head back to camp. Brandon and I had seen so much just on our first day, but I know we were both harbouring a tinge of disappointment that we had yet to see the king of the jungle.
Then, out of the corner of my eye, just as we were pulling up to our camp gates, I saw them. Two motley looking lion brothers playing on a hill– and they were heading right for our car! So I did the most rational thing and rolled down my windows to get a better look. They ended up walking right in front of our car– we were close enough to touch them at one point! Brandon was ecstatic! This was exactly what we came to Africa for, and it was everything we dreamed.
When we got back to the lobby, all the lodge staff were asking us about our lion encounter–they were as excited as we were! We spent the next while showing people pictures and relishing in our luck of seeing the two beasts.
For the remainder of our African trip, we would reminisce about that first time, that first glance, that first witnessing of the powerful kings of the jungle.