A trip to Komatipoort first thing today...Out of pellets, carrots and apples!!!...A familiar drive reaps rewards...


That littlest one could not have been more than a week or two old.
"Sighting of the Day in the Bush"
This male ostrich appeared comfortably seated in the middle of a driveway of a bush home.
Busy since we returned from Zambia and Botswana one week ago today, neither of us had any interest in grocery shopping.  We stopped for some meat and vegetables in Melalane on the return drive from the airport, hurriedly purchasing enough to last several days.
Spotting elephants and lions are the most exciting when we make our usual drive in Marloth Park.  Yesterday, we didn't see lions but were thrilled to see elephants again on our first drive in Marloth in over two weeks, after our time away in Zambia and Botswana.
After dining out on Saturday night with Kathy and Don and eating light on Sunday after the braai at Frikkees Dam on Sunday with Louise and Danie and friends, we made it with the few items we had on hand.

But, when we ran out of apples and carrots on Wednesday and the pellet supply dwindled down to only enough for this morning, we knew it was time to head to Komatipoort to shop for pellets and groceries. 
It was a perfect sunny day and the elephants graced us on our side of the Crocodile River.
This would include Tom's usual trip to Lebombo for the carrots and apples for the wildlife along with eggs for the mongoose who've also been stopping by each day.  It's been rather busy here.
It's always special to see the babies and how lovingly they are cared for by the entire parade.
With the immigration thing hanging over our heads which is yet to be resolved with only 83 days remaining until our current visas expire, we've definitely been pre-occupied.  

In the next few days, we'll share some other options we've been working on which may or may not provide a solution.  We wanted to move it along a little further before we started posting details.  We're almost at that point.
We spotted around 20 elephants in this sighting.
Restocking food for the wildlife and ourselves made us both feel a little more settled.  Lately, everything feels a little "up in the air" with so little time remaining until we have to leave.
As summer nears in the next few months, everything will be lush and green providing great food sources for the wildlife.
I must admit I've struggled to do the posts, for the first time since we began posting in March 2012 while so entrenched in the current situation.  Normally, we take things in our stride and are easily able to maintain an upbeat attitude.  

If anything, we work on solutions and resolutions that generally only take a day or two at most.  But, here we are a week later, without a sense of assuredness as to what will transpire next.
We stayed watching them for quite a while.  It's not easy to walk away.
Rather than sitting around mopping and/or worrying we decided to allocate so much time a day to finding a solution, spending the remainder of our days and evenings doing exactly what has made our past six-plus months in Marloth Park so extraordinary...time with the wildlife and our friends.  It really helps.
At a distance, we spotted a dazzle of zebras climbing back up the steep embankment by the Crocodile River.
We took off in the newest "little car" and I mean "little."  It's a Datsun Go if you know what that is.  No offense to any Datsun Go owners out there.  It's definitely an economical and fuel-efficient small car that we have no doubt owners appreciate.  
There are often a few cattle egret near elephants.
For the entire three-month rental of the little car, it was only slightly over ZAR 14,614, (US $1000) the lowest price we've paid anywhere in the world.  The tradeoff is the fact that we bounce around like crazy on these rough dirt roads in Marloth and Kruger Parks.

With the upcoming uncertainty and the expensive Kenya tour in February for which we'll be paying the second of three installments tomorrow at ZAR 78,431 (US $5360), we've had to tighten our belts over something we could control, the cost of the rental car.
They often stay close to one another for safety reasons especially when there are youngsters in the herd.
Thus, when we took off in search of even more wildlife, we knew it was going to be one bumpy ride and, indeed it was.  Thank goodness my back doesn't hurt anymore.  These rides would be unbearable for anyone suffering from any type of painful condition.

With much anticipation and enthusiasm, we bounced around Marloth Park, never to be disappointed as shown in today's photos.  No, it wasn't as exciting as a game drive in Chobe or Kruger National Parks but it certainly was special and worthwhile.
A solitary male impala by the river.  Most often impalas are found in herds.
Now back at the house with everything put away, a new 40 kg bag of pellets filling the big trash bin we keep in the corner of the living room, using the little yellow Tupperware container to scoop out and toss the pellets to the visitors, we feel somewhat back to our enjoyable routine.

Soon, I'll start cutting apples and carrots for the visitors and begin preparing our dinner for tonight, roast beef on the braai, roasted vegetables and a green salad with homemade dressing.  Simple. Predictable.  And, delicious.

Life is still good.  It's just a little complicated right now.  We'll make it right soon.

Happy day!
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Photo from one year ago today, August 30, 2017:

A winking barn owl at a rescue center in Costa Rica.  For more photos, please click here.

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