April Safaris

Reply

Feb 9th, 2003, 08:07 AM
  #21
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Cindy-
I'm not sure who you addressed your question to, but I will add my feelings as I'm sure others will. You really need a mixture of opinions, at least I like to have more than one.
I would not at this time be planning any trips from the U.S. until we know more about the world situation. You have to get there first, and that is my problem. South Africa seems safer than the U.S. East Africa is different since they have had terrorist attacks. I too would like to return to East Africa, but I have already showed on this thread that I am more skittish than most of the people here.
I have traveled a lot to Africa on my own but I wouldn't be planning for such a trip right now. I would give it until mid-summer. You stand to lose more by putting money down now. Insurance doesn't cover attacks by enemies.
Just my opinion and I should tell you I am older than most on this thread. With age comes caution. Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 9th, 2003, 08:09 AM
  #22
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Kavey-
Woo Hoo right back at ya. I hope to hear from you here within the hour or two. Sorry about your hubby, but Woo Hoo! Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 9th, 2003, 08:46 AM
  #23
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
For Mary-
Are you still reading this I hope.
I got further clarification from Bert. Once war is declared we can go on delay. We have up to one year to take the trip as close to our current trip as possible. Just those who choose to do this may. Others will go on and good luck to them. We too may by mid-April. Since right now it looks like mid-March before Iraq things reach the boiling point, we needed that assurance before we made the final payment. With that now we feel comfortable paying the final payment (we already have the airline tickets). First and foremost, I wanted this trip and we will go if it appears safe to get there by early April. I think it is very generous of Wilderness Safaris and I am very happy we booked this trip as we did. We could have lost BIG bucks. Its real lucky that Travel Guard has a similar policy. But I will in the future, wait to purchase insurance until the final payment is due. Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 9th, 2003, 11:39 AM
  #24
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,458
Liz - my question was addressed to any/all who cared to respond. Thanks for your reply.

I read of Roccco experiences in Zimbabwe and Bejing and would never want to be in a situation like that. I have friends who were "trapped" in Las Vegas on 9/11 and even though they were willing to drive 1400 miles to get home there wasn't a rental car to be had. And I know of the bombing in Kenya but didn't feel like it had much to do with a group of people on safari.

And you are probably right - I should wait and see what happens. It's just that there's this little Africa bug that I have acquired that tells me I must go. Now. And as I'm sure you know, once the plans are actually made it makes it all real and not just a "someday" thing.
Cindy

sundowner is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 9th, 2003, 12:23 PM
  #25
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Cindy-
My comments are aimed at travel in Kenya, not the South African countries. In order to travel to Kenya, you fly through Europe, and mostly use American carriers to get to Europe. Flying to SA, you can fly directly from the East Coast, to J'burg or Capetown, on South African Airways non-stop. These are two quite distinct things. I wouldn't downplay the proximity of Kenya to terrorist occupied countries around it. So I thought I should add that my trip is non-stop on SAA to South Africa and return. That feels safer to me. Also the countries I will be visiting are very safe countries. Botswana is one of the safest, never having had a civil war. These are all things I consider. I have the "Africa bug" as bad as anyone here. We all seem to have it after our first trip. I dream of returning most of the time. BUT I do not take unnecessary risks. So what would be the harm of waiting a couple or three months to cast in stone the details of your visit? Dream on and plan all you want. Just put off the commitment for now (Assuming you live in the U.S.). Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 9th, 2003, 06:43 PM
  #26
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,458
Liz - I had already considered using SAA through J'burg just because I didn't want to fly through Amsterdam. I hate to fly and even though Atlanta to Capetown or J'burg is a very, very long flight, it's just one flight. Facing two very long flights is way worse to me.

I do have a contact near Nelspruit or Hoedspruit (I don't remember now which town you fly to) but they are right on the border of Kruger. They have promised me a great safari.
I don't want to do something that would be "stupid" or "risky" so maybe I'll plan on seeing Kruger this year and save Kenya for another trip.

Does this "Africa bug" ever get any weaker? It hasn't even been 6 months since I returned from our first trip and I have shown great self restraint by not just hopping on a plane and going back. I was finally going to allow myself to book a trip and now it's not a good thing to do. It's killing me!
Thanks
Cindy

sundowner is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 10th, 2003, 12:49 PM
  #27
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 124
Liz,
Thanks for the addl detail on the cancelation policies. I have a very good friend with Geographic Expeditions who says that high end travel is down so much now that these companies (WS included) have to be very lenient with their policies right now in order to maintain their clientele.

Seems like Kavey actually did go to Jordan. It will be interesting to hear her trip report.
Mary
Mary is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 10th, 2003, 05:32 PM
  #28
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 592
Cindy:

I think the "African bug" never weakens
but only gets stronger with every trip when you not only see such marvelous wildlife but meet such wonderful people.

I just returned Friday from my third trip to Kenya in three years. My family also worried about me traveling alone with the possibility of war looming. However, it was another fabulous trip with no incidents whatsoever. There has been a big improvement in Nairobi just in the last month since President Kibaki took over. All the street kids have been moved to camps where they will get vocational training. There are far fewer beggars in the streets, and much more security evident. The attitiude of the citizens is now hopeful and proud.

Depending on where you want to go the seasons are a little different. Spent at whole week at Ol Tukai Lodge in Amboseli watching my elephants and everything was green and lush. So many elephants and tons of new babies. By the end of my week there you could see the grass browning up closer to Kilimanjaro.

I then spent five days at Tsavo East. They were already in their dry season with all the grass looking burned. At first I was disappointed, until they showed me to my tent at Satao Camp. My tent was directly in front of the borehole and we had hundreds of elephants every day. I just sat on my veranda with my video camera going and caught every minute of it. Even chose to forego several game drives just so I could see my "magnificent creatures". The only disappointing thing I saw was two bull elephants, both with broken legs. The older one was about 25 years old and the fracture of his right rear leg was obviously an old one that had caused a deformity. The younger bull was about 13 years old and was accompanied by a friend who was always walking slowly with him. He too had a fracture of his right rear leg in the knee area. I felt so badly because these bulls would never be able to fight or breed, but they were able to get enough food and get to and from the water holes. A local resident told me he had heard these two bulls were hit by a train - a distinct possibility. I am going to try to find out if any veterinarians have done orthopedic surgery on wild elephants and might be willing to try to help these two worthy animals.

I will admit I was a little nervous flying into Mombasa where I stayed for one night, but everything was a pleasant as always. No trouble at all.

Just choose your travel insurance wisely and be sure to register with the American Embassy when you get to Nairobi. Just to keep my family happy I also registered with The Flying Doctors in Nairobi - if you are sick or injured they will fly to you and fly you out to a competent medical facility and, if needed, will escort you home. Luckily I didn't need their services, so my "donation" will be used to help some Kenyan who does need help.

When I returned to Nairobi prior to my return flight home, we had two afternoon showers lasting about an hour and then the sun shone beautifully.

I hope your trip is as fantastic as mine was. Just be safe!

Jan
JanGoss is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 05:54 AM
  #29
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,458
Jan -
I haven't been to Kenya before and am really looking forward to it - whether it be this year or next (hopefully this year!). The best time for me to be away from home is Aug/Sep. The trip I'm looking at is 2 nights at Samburu Serena Lodge, 2 nights at Lake Nakuru Lodge and then 3 nights at Mara River Camp. I am planning to add on nights at Mara River Camp.
I'm jealous of your experience with the elephants - I cannot even imagine the thrill of what that was like.
It bothers me a bit that the "African bug" gets worse with each trip - I was hoping to squelch it with one more trip! I only get 3 weeks vacation per year and my kids are too young (6 & 8) to make this our vacation every year but I certainly cannot just ignore this "bug".
Thanks for sharing your trip and your encouragement.
Cindy
sundowner is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 08:49 AM
  #30
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Cindy-
The 'Africa bug' is like falling in love. It eventually just settles in and becomes a part of your soul. Once Africa falls in love with you, you keep that feeling for a long, long time. It isn't always demanding, but it is always there, tucked into your heart and soul. When the time is right for a return trip, it gets a stronger grip and somehow you find a way to feed it. Some of my trips are expensive, some are very cheap. All are as satisfying, because the 'bug' only wants you to be there. The fashion you go is up to you. We've done a very inexpensive trip that left us with the Africa glow for a couple of years after.
Don't ever fear it, after all it is your love. If you post an email address, I will send a favorite impression I read about Africa, that I keep by my desk. It so accurately describes my feelings for Africa that you might enjoy it too. Its a little long to post and not everyone may care to read it. Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 09:00 AM
  #31
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Cindy-
Oops, didn't comment on your itinerary. It sounds like a PERFECT first safari. Especially Mara River Camp for 3 or more days. You will be there when the Wildebeest migration is there and you will absolutely bawl when they force you to leave to return home. I actually did that on my first trip and we ended the trip at Mara River Camp. I bawled like a baby in the women's restroom at the airport. My heart was breaking. All of the African ladies were comforting me saying "why is he making you leave?" There was no 'he' then. They were so sweet and they all stood with their arms around me and I just cried harder. (What a baby, right?) That was when I met the 'Africa bug' face to face, and I knew in my heart something had changed. I know you will absolutely be the same. You already are experiencing it like I did. Even before I left. tee hee. Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 10:21 AM
  #32
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,458
Liz -
I know what you mean about the crying. I left a few tears in the sky over Namibia when we left.
You said "the 'Africa bug' is like falling in love. It eventually just settles in and becomes a part of your soul. Once Africa falls in love with you, you keep that feeling for a long, long time."
If you had asked me to describe what the Africa bug feels like I'm not sure what I would have said but you are exactly right! It IS like falling in love . . .
I would love to read anything you think I would be interested in. Send to
[email protected]

Thanks
Cindy
sundowner is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 12:19 PM
  #33
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15
Liz,
The Africa bug has definately had its way with me. Please post of send me your favorite African impression. Thanks, darlene
darlene is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 12:20 PM
  #34
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 15
Opps, here's my email address: [email protected] darlene
darlene is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 11th, 2003, 12:59 PM
  #35
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Cindy and Darlene-

You've got email. Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 12th, 2003, 11:19 AM
  #36
Lolita
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Hey, Liz and Kavey - we communicated, remember?

Liz, I went to SA a week or so after 9-11 ... I share your concerns.

I'd vote for going! You'll have the most amazing time. And do post your comments about your trip afterward.

Have fun, and my thoughts go with you. I haven't talked with Bert lately, but I imagine he'll try to work with his clients.

Take care of yourself, and have fun at Little Mombo/Mombo.
 
Reply With Quote
Feb 12th, 2003, 01:36 PM
  #37
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 975
Liz, would you please send it to me too?

[email protected]

Your falling in love analogy is oh so right.
Celia is offline  
Reply With Quote
Feb 12th, 2003, 02:53 PM
  #38
LizFrazier
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Celia-

You've got email. Liz
 
Reply With Quote
Mar 2nd, 2003, 06:26 AM
  #39
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9,153
Liz
I have a feeling you may have sent me that impression some time back but incase I am misremembering (I am senile remember) please would you email it again?

[email protected]
Kavey is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 3rd, 2003, 05:35 PM
  #40
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 13
Hi Kavey:

Was your husband well enough to take the trip to Africa? If so how was the trip. My husband and I are still on the wait and see. Everything hinges on Bush's war.
dterrell69 is offline  
Reply With Quote
 


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:27 PM.