June 10 – Okavango Delta

Up early, and a momentary terrifying scare when I thought I’d lost the power cord to the Hyperdrive. It would have meant taking only as many pictures as could fit on the SD cards I have with me. I know that 28Gb sounds like a lot of space, but I’m shooting in RAW, each photo takes about 24Mb of space, so a 4Gb card holds only about 200 photos. For the most part, I’m shooting with a new camera that I’m not entirely comfortable with (Canon 450D XSi) and a rented lens that I’m not entirely comfortable with (though it’s gorgeous in what it can do — Canon 100-400L), so I do NOT want to be limited. Fortunately, I found the cord — right where I’d put it for safekeeping…

Nice breakfast, back onto a small plane with George and off to Maun again.

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There was only one hitch: our safari operator was not there to meet us. The driver brought us over to the office for Gunn’s Camp where a nice lady took Grant’s name and phone number, went inside, came back five minutes later with a white face and said they’d made a terrible mistake. Turns out we WERE supposed to have three nights, not two. She offered to have us flown back out with the night at the main (upscale) camp rather than the bush camp, where drinks are included in the tab. Let’s see here… two extra small plane rides, an upscale camp for the night, and free booze. Somehow we didn’t see this as much of a problem.

So we were flown black out to the camp.

But this time we stayed at the upscale main camp: beds, en suite toilet & shower, laundry service and more. Nice gesture by the camp and a lovely end to a totally lovely experience (including tea at 3:30, another bush walk, then sundowners (otherwise known as evening drinks!) and dinner).

One scary moment in our last mokoro ride of the day: our poler did a quick reverse and back out of the channel and then had each of us stand up to see a hippo in the channel not far away. Hippos are so incredibly dangerous to folks in these small boats… Ulp…

Despite that, it’s impossible really to describe the peace of a mokoro ride:

or the peace of the delta itself…

Lilypad in Okavango Delta

Lilypad in Okavango Delta

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