safari

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Jan 17th, 2006, 02:42 AM
  #1
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safari

Just wondering about the word 'safari'. I couldn't help but laugh when an American friend referred to her upcoming safari to the Sabi Sands. No South African would use that word. For me 'safari' means Kenya and places like that. If we go to the Kruger we're just going into the bush. The Sabi Sands is great but it's more like a very big zoo with convenient populations of lepard and lion.
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Jan 17th, 2006, 02:43 AM
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Maybe it's all Hemingway's fault!
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Jan 17th, 2006, 03:13 AM
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The word "safari" does originate from Kenya and I think it is a local word meaning "a trip" or "to explore."
I know that lodges in South Africa use this terminoligy to substitute the word also commonly used " game drive" but "safari" seems better understood mainly by Americans.
Your clasification of the Sabi Sand as not more than a glorified zoo is totally and utterly incorrect. It is part and parcel of the greater Kruger Park with no fences so game can move freely throughout the area. It is also an area that has committed itself to the Peace Parks program.
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Jan 17th, 2006, 03:55 AM
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Hi,
Don't know anything about the Sabi Sands, but as an American, I think I would understand the concept of a 'game drive.' I can't however speak for all Americans because I'm not sure that they all think alike.

A few people did ask if I would be hunting, when I mentioned that I was going on safari.

Peace;
Sherry
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Jan 17th, 2006, 04:05 AM
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leana,

Considering that you were planning a "once in a lifetime" one night visit to the Sabi Sand, I am wondering if you have ever stayed in the Sabi Sand?
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Jan 17th, 2006, 04:45 AM
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Hi Leanapayne,

In Swahili the word (derived from Arabic) “safari” means journey/trip. “Kusafiri” is “to travel” and “msafiri” means traveller.

In English (and other languages) it’s a very long established loan word meaning “a hunting trip in Africa”. And since 50 years or more it has also meant a trip to photograph and observe wildlife, not only in Africa – there are “tiger safaris” in India and some people in Sweden set up “moose safaris” for German tourists, and everyone understands what they mean.

Most people with a basic command of English understand what a game drive is once they’ve started planning their first safari. I once met a Spanish couple that were calling the game drives “safaris”, but that’s because they knew almost no English at all and their Spanish-speaking guide was using that word – there is no good Spanish translation.

I find it perfectly normal to talk about your upcoming safari to the Sabi Sands. I’ve never been to South Africa, but I’ve had a look at the website of Taga Safaris.




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Jan 17th, 2006, 05:07 AM
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Hi Leanapayne,

You may not use the word safari in relation to Kruger Park, but evidently many people do. This is the description used by a travel company:

Welcome to AfricanSunSafaris - for an experience of a lifetime and a unique and real safari encounter. Together with Ashtons Tours, we offer you an up-close-and-personal safari and cultural experience taking in some of South Africa's most beautiful and untouched regions in the Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces- including the Kruger National Park.

So, I guess the point is that not all South Africans use certain words the same way, any more than all Americans, all Brits, etc, use certain words the same way. We are all individuals afterall, aren't we.

Jack



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Jan 17th, 2006, 05:19 AM
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leanapayne

I am South African and wouldn't laugh at the choice of words of your American friend...I also refer to my upcoming safari to the Sabi Sands.

<<The Sabi Sands is great but it's more like a very big zoo with convenient populations of lepard and lion.>>

How many times have you been to this zoo?
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Jan 17th, 2006, 06:30 AM
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Never been to the sabi sands but all the advertising for the various lodges gives me the impression it is set up to provide tourists with what they are expecting..i.e a suitably close encounter with wild animals.

The reason I want to spend one night there is to actually see the tourists and the architecture and interior design of the lodges.

Have been to Kruger and it does seem like a big zoo to me. Just my impression. The birds are wild but all the other animals are fenced in. It's not the fenced in part that bothers me so much as the fact that these animals are highly 'managed'...the fact that they are planning to kill thousands of elephants is a good example of this.
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Jan 17th, 2006, 02:11 PM
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Leana,

The word "safari" to most Americans means the trip itself, a specific type of trip to see wildlife rather than a beach trip, a European trip, etc. We don't usually mean each individual game drive. Maybe you only think of "safari" as meaning a trip to East Africa, because that is actually more of a real "trip" for you since you already live in South Africa.

The part that is puzzling to me is why you seem to be running down your own country's most famed National Park Kruger, and Sabi Sands (which you have never been to) referring to them as zoos. Sabi Sands certainly did not feel anything like a zoo to me, and Kruger has a huge expanse of land that I don't think anyone could claim to be a zoo. I have never been into Kruger, but possibly because the camps are fenced for safety reasons, that gave you the impression of being in a zoo? But then it's not that clear why you were looking to stay in a fenced camp in Sabi Sands.

It appears that you are more interested in birds than mammals, and don't really like to ride in vehicles for gameviewing, but just because you are not interested in it doesn't seem a good reason to keep calling these places "zoos". Personally, it seems to me that if many of these places were not preserved for game viewing, then there would also be much less good birding, because once the environment is gone, it's gone for birds, not just mammals.

Also, you said that you want to stay in Sabi Sands for one night to "see the tourists". I don't think I've come across anyone else on this board that wants to visit Sabi Sands for that reason, but I'm sure the lodge you choose will take your money for that reason as well as any other.

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Jan 17th, 2006, 04:05 PM
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Sometimes I like to use the word to describe just going to the mailbox or across the street. But that's just me.
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Jan 17th, 2006, 04:13 PM
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Its early in 2006, but I'd like to nominate this statement for silliest of the year: "The reason I want to spend one night there is to actually see the tourists and the architecture and interior design of the lodges."

The year is young and I'm sure you'll be challenged (I'm sure I'll make some foolish comments, too), but you may likely find yourself on the podium at year end hoisting your award for most absurb comment!
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Jan 17th, 2006, 05:14 PM
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I think Leana is really Larson in disguise.....
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Jan 17th, 2006, 06:53 PM
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Thit Cho,

You won't get an argurment from me on such nomination. I did have that one moment of pity, however, in that first millisecond after I read it, realizing what hot water the OP had gotten herself into.
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Jan 18th, 2006, 02:02 AM
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I really was not trying to be silly. Was just interested in the word 'safari'.

Most people that I know...i'm not talking about all South Africans... but people that I work with for example...we have a good laugh over the whole 'safari' concept. We work in a highly tourist oriented environment in Cape Town and it is indeed quite hilarious to view tourists wearing khaki outfits in Cape Town in preparation for their great safari adventure in the remote wilds of the Sabi Sands. And although not all tourists fit this description it is amazing how many do.

It's like when I went to Texas and bought the boots & the hat and totally fell for the whole cowboy mythology. Tourists are suckers for the myth and the romance. The experience that people have in the Sabi Sands is a tailor made experience - designed to fit in with the myth and the romance. Nothing wrong with that. Just see it for what it is.







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Jan 18th, 2006, 03:12 AM
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leana,

I'm from Austin, Texas, and I can assure you that cowboys, boots, cowboy hats, blue jeans, steer wrestling, calf roping, bull riding, rodeos, spitting tobacco, etc, are not myths. Sure, you go to the downtown area of a large city like Dallas or Houston and you're probably not going to see many, if any, people in boots and cowboy hats. But, you get away from the big cities and... you got it, folks in boots and cowboy hats are not uncommon at all. Of course, UT Rose Bowl National Championship caps are real popular right now (sorry Rocco and the rest of you Calif dreamers).
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Jan 18th, 2006, 05:18 AM
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Safari clothing is not much different than any other so-called costume that visitors think they are expected to wear when visiting one destination or another.

Read the European board and see how many posts ask "what to wear in Paris so not to look like tourist" - Duh! Get those runners off your feet, first. Likewise, "what to wear in New York City when shopping at Madison Avenue shops (can be the same for Rodeo Road in Beverly Hills; Harrod's in London). Opening your mouth to ask a question in Paris is a giveaway; same when that Southern drawl comes out when on Madison Ave or Rodeo Drive.

You're a tourist and it's your choice, wherever you visit as to what to wear, do, or say "to fit in." More often, you won't.

Rarely, did we see guests at Singita in Safari clothing - more jeans, slacks, skirts (some in khaki or tan on game drives or walks) and of course those darn runners. Hey folks, think mocassins or loafers unless you're trekking somewhere. Evening attire could have been as any restaurant anywhere in the world - nice casual, with a few extra pieces of jewelry, scarves and dainty slippers on the feet.

For that matter, except for my photo vest which I used on my first few safaris and only to hold my camera stuff, it hasn't seen the light of day since. People should go with comfort and interchangeable pieces when dealing with weight limits for the internal flights. And this can be casual or a bit dressier.

Seeing the people (tourists) are incidental to what Mother Nature provides when on safari.

Though, I can understand wanting to visit camps to see the architecture, design, patterns, colors that have been incorporated in the wide variety of properties out there, you can buy a great coffee table book called "Simply Safari" by the Balfours. This couple are game photographers, but decided to produce this book showing the variety of design found at many safari lodges and camps (high-end) in Southern Africa - Bostwana, South Africa, Namibia.

Whether you call it safari, the bush, the outback or shopping - all are a "journey" to an adventure.

 
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Jan 18th, 2006, 05:22 AM
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wjsonl...

I went to Texas to see Lyle Lovett play in Dallas. It was surreal. Ross Perot was sitting 2 rows in front of me. It was a charity event and the audience was composed of a lot of Dallas socialites.

I did however meet a real farmer/cowboy in Billy Bobs at a Robert Earl Keen concert. He was from Amarillo.

If only I had been brave enough to hire a car and drive on the right hand side of the road. I could have got beyond Dallas, Fort Worth and Austin. Would love to go to Big Bend National Park. Or for that matter what about Cibolo Creek Ranch: it looks to be the same type of upscale authentic experience as offered in the Sabi Sands.
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Jan 18th, 2006, 05:25 AM
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Leana,
I'm stuggling with your comments to figure out what your point really is.

Are you simply intriqued by the word safari itself, or is it the 'game drive' tourist in 'game drive' clothing that your trying to put into your their prospective place?

Thanks;
Sherry
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Jan 18th, 2006, 05:26 AM
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Thanks sandi for understanding my appreciation for the architecture & interior design aspects and for that book recommendation.

Yes it is an adventure whatever way you look at it.

I guess I'm just bitter because I can only afford one night!!!
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