Winding down time with friends...Two days until their departure...The activities will continue to the last minute...


A cattle egret standing in shallow water in the Crocodile River.
"Sighting of the Day in the Bush"
The monitor lizard in our garden came out from her burrow for a refreshing drink of water from the cement pond.
As Tom and Lois's time here comes to a close on Thursday when they depart to return to the US, we're packing in every moment with quality time, not only together as friends but also in taking advantage of every opportunity for them to experience more wildlife.
The monitor lizard took off back into the bush.
This afternoon at 1515 hours (3:15 pm) a safari vehicle will arrive to pick us up for an evening at Kruger National Park which includes an afternoon game drive, a bush braai (dinner out in the open in the park in the dark), followed by another game drive in the dark.
Elephant we spotted close to the fence between Marloth and Kruger Parks.
With a spotlight to help us see, we'll have an opportunity to see those special nocturnal animals that are elusive during daylight hours including many of which are never seen during daylight.
The sausage tree at the hippo pool and bird blind is bursting with these giant pods which will eventually bloom into bright red flowers.  From this site: "The sausage tree of sub-Saharan Africa is beautiful in flower. The blood-red to maroon flowers hang in long panicles. The fragrance of the flower is not pleasing to humans but attracts the Dwarf Epauletted Fruitbat (Micropteropus pusillus), its pollinator. As the flowers drop from the tree, animals come to feed on the nectar-rich blooms. Impala, duiker, baboons, bush pigs, and lovebirds all feed on the flowers of the Sausage tree. Grey fruits grow out of these flowers. These grey fruits resemble sausages and can grow for months to become over a foot long and weigh over 10 pounds."
We may have safari luck or we may not but in either case, it will be fun to dine in the bush, an experience we had a few times when we were here five years ago. 
Both Toms splurging on strawberry milkshakes at Aamazing (spelling is correct) River View restaurant when we took a break from our usual drive in Marloth to stop for cool drinks.
Those five-year-ago exceptional occasions were hosted by Louise and Danie, an experience we cannot expect to match in elegance tonight although based on very positive reviews we're anticipating a wonderful experience. For details and amazing photos for our former Valentine's Day bush braai may be found here at this link.
Lois, the two Toms and I had a great break in the action.
Of course, tomorrow, we'll post photos of tonight's bush braai and game drives, hoping to share some unique wildlife sightings.  Tonight's event is hosted by another company, Royal Safari Bush Braai dinner since Louise and Danie no longer conduct these events in Kruger.  
A warthog stops for a sip.
The ease in booking with Royal Safari Bush Braai makes us feel confident this will be an excellent experience for the four of us and any other participants who will also be included.  
A female bushbuck standing in the water on the Crocodile River in Kruger.
Last night we returned to Ngwenya Lodge and Restaurant for Crocodile River viewing and dinner.  Ordering off the menu wasn't nearly as good as Thursday night's buffet dinner. There's wasn't much in the way of wildlife viewing but we took many photos of a stunning sunset (photos to follow soon).
Cape buffalo aren't the most handsome of wildlife but we're always thrilled to see them.  They are one of the Big Five.
Back at the house early, we prepared the veranda for our usual nighttime viewing but had missed the primetime viewing which is usually before and after dusk.
Two male cape buffalos on the river's edge.
This morning was quite a treat when 15 kudus stopped by including one "Big Daddy," four warthogs including "Little and the Girls", a plethora of helmeted guineafowl and of course, Frank and the Mrs. who've yet to produce any chicks.

As I write here now, Vusi and Zef are here cleaning the house and the veranda.  Its been fantastic to have the two of them coming in each day and eliminating the massive amounts of dust that enters the house from the action in the dirt garden when the animals come to call.
Lois feeding a large number of kudus who stopped by.  She puts the pellets on the veranda's edge to keep the helmeted guineafowl from taking them all.
For the next few hours, we'll relax on the veranda until it's time to head out for our exciting upcoming afternoon and evening.

Be well.  Be happy.  
_________________________________________

Photo from one year ago today, October 30, 2017:
On Saturday night, after dinner, in Managua, Nicaragua, we wandered through the pool area of our hotel.  For food photos from the dinner, please click here.

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