The next morning -- early, early morning -- was our first pre-dawn game drive. We roused ourselves at 4:30am, which was just enough time to shower, brush our teeth, and get over to the lodge for Pre-Breakfast 1.
We set off on a completely different path from the day before (as we would do for every game drive), spotting kudu, waterbuck, and the ubiquitous impala along the way.
Pre-Breakfast 2 was served mid-safari at roughly 7am.
Afterwards, our talented tracker, DeBeers, led us to a Cape buffalo and a stunning, elusive leopard, rounding out in just two safari drives the Big Five we'd hoped to see.
As well as the baby elephants I couldn't see often enough.
After the game drive, it was time for our third meal of the day, Official Breakfast.
When we arrived back at our suite after stuffing ourselves silly, we discovered that some visitors had been monkeying around the place.
That afternoon was spent lazing around the pool in hopes of seeing a passing elephant (me) and passing out cold from lack of sleep (Angel).
On the evening game drive, another surprise: Animals we never expected to see in Africa, like turtles, owls, saddle-billed storks, and technicolor lizards.
And a few we did expect, like hares, mongoose (mongeese?) and vultures.
Plus zebras which, amid all the green, looked suprisingly more exotic than any other animal we saw on safari.
As well as the "usual" kudu, hippos, and lions.
Dinner that night was held outdoors in Arathusa's boma, a wooden enclosure traditionally used to house livestock.
After dinner, we hung around the bar for a bit . . . because the armed guard who escorted us back to Marula each night had spotted some leopards near our front door.
Which has to be the best excuse I'll ever have for ordering another round.
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