Lion on the best laundry day ever!

On Lock-Down inside Kruger National Park – Day 30

Yesterday was laundry day again… The best laundry day ever! I kind of live for laundry days at the moment. It is such a welcome change of the ordinary lock-down-life routine. A routine that most Krugerholics would absolutely love to experience, I am well aware of that. And we are not complaining at all. We have a big yard, a fantastic view of the Kruger and animal friends that come and visit. It is just nice to get out twice a week!

 

We had a bit of a slow start yesterday morning. We had a lekker family breakfast together and it was only at about 10 that I finally left for camp.

 

Driving under the thatch roof of the gate I had a good chuckle. You know the area in front of the reception? That piece of rock-garden in the fork of the road with all the aloes and impala lilies? There are a few rows of rocks on the edge where the garden meets the tar road. And the elephants have pushed a lot of those rocks into the road. They even moved the buffalo skull over, right at the entrance of the reception! I am telling you: they are loving their free reign of Kruger!

 

Before the T-junction, I was greeted by a big breeding herd of elephants. They were busy feeding and slowly making their way to the river. It promised to be a warm day! On the fringe of the herd, two bulls were having a stand-down. One bull was significantly bigger than the other one, both in body size and the length of his tusks. While the rest of the herd was going about their business (I saw three ellies that looked like they were having a snooze in the shade of a Marula Tree), the two bulls had a bit of a wrestling match. The sound of their tusks clashing together was impressive. I wonder what a full-blown fight for dominance would sound and look like!

Elephants wresteling for dominance on the best laundry day ever!
Ellie wrestling match

The jostling bulls disappeared in the thickets and I continued my journey to the Laundromat. As there was on my previous laundry trips, the road was littered with elephant dung and discarded twigs and branches. Then at one of the wallows right by the side of the road, another breeding herd of elephants was having a mud bath. I could see more elephants making their way to the wallow – with haste in their gait and obvious excitement at the prospect of cooling down. The other elephants greeted them with trumpeting and tummy rumbling. Ahhh, I could watch elephants for hours… but I had my washing to do.

 

While I waited for a gap to slowly move past all the elephants, I saw a troop of baboons further up ahead. They were also all over the road, running up and down, youngsters chasing each other, the adults quietly grooming each other in the remaining shade on the road. I could also watch baboons for hours! They are so entertaining!

 

With the baboons leaving the road and moving further away, I also continued my drive along the empty road to camp. The grass on the side of the road is starting to dry out and is getting this beautiful golden colour. One particular reddish-golden tuft of grass caught my eye and as I drove past it, the tuft moved and turned into a big male lion! He was fast asleep in the last bit of shade on the side of the road, using a pile of elephant dung for a pillow.

Best laundry day ever!
All comfy on his elephant poop-pillow…

My heart skipped a beat or two as a stopped my car and slowly reversed to get next to him. Seeing lions never gets boring! Even for us Kruger residents!

 

The sound of my handbrake woke up my sleeping beauty. You know how you sometimes have pillow creases all over the side of your face after a particularly good nights sleep? Well, that was exactly what this lion looked like when he lifted his head off of his elephant poop-pillow. His regal mane stuck to his face and I could not help but laugh at the pillow-crease analogy that popped into my head. The lion looked at me all sleepy-eyed for a few moments and then fell asleep again; Head on his massive paws.

 

I sat next to this sleeping lion for quite a while. People in Malalane have reported hearing lions roaring close by for the past week or so. And I wonder if it could be this male patrolling his territory al night and then sleep during the day.

 

The little patch of shade the lion was sleeping in was getting smaller and smaller. I was getting hot inside the car and I could see the lion was feeling the heat too. He started yawning, scratching the back of his head and finally got up for a good old cat stretch… Not long after that, he disappeared into the bush, leaving my heart pounding in my chest. This was a big guy! And you can really only appreciate how big lions actually are when they stand upright next to you!

 

Right when I was thinking that this trip to the Laundromat could not get any better, a bright green blob on the road caught my eye. A chameleon was crossing the road in typical rocking back and forth chameleon style. I took a few pictures of him and made sure he got to the other side of the road safely.

 

Best laundry day ever!!

PS. Keep an eye on our Facebook Page for some video’s I took on yesterday’s laundry day!

Chameleon on the best laundry day ever!
Don’t you just love the way Chameleons walk?

 

 

 

34 thoughts on “On Lock-Down inside Kruger National Park – Day 30

  1. Thanks Linda. I sincerely hope that there are still some facilities left intact by the elephants for us tourists when this is all over. Stay safe.

  2. Haga Linda thinking of you from now on when do my laundry. Not so exiting I can assure you😉😉 Wonderful to read your stories. It breaks the day. Thanks!

  3. Are you saying that the elephants are going inside the camp or did you mean the garden outside the camp gate??

  4. I love your laundry days. They’re certainly much better than mine! You’re going to be so sorry, when you can have your washing machine fixed, after lockdown ☹️

  5. Followed your stories since day 1. I’m a Kruger-hollic and enjoy your life in Kruger too much! Thank you.

  6. Great trip to the laundry! From elephants to lions to chamelions – such special sightings, and the best thing of all is that you have them to yourself!! I in the meantime and making safaris through my garden , seeing butterflies and horseflies and carpenter bees and lizards and striped mice . . . . Not really comparable, but fascinating on a small scale 🙂 Thanks for the virtual entertainment Linda – as always, much enjoyed.

  7. What an amazing trip to do the chores! A tough life up there in paradise…
    Please keep the stories & photo’s coming, they really make my day!

  8. It seems such a pity that you cannot – as a family – use he opportunity to go on family game drives – as long as the local rangers know. such a great opportunity to see the beasts without the beasts – so to speak!

  9. Linda, I can’t tell you enough how much I enjoy reading your stories. You bring the Kruger alive for me. Your obvious love for the animals and the Park is so warming. Keep the stories coming.

  10. Love your diary and your laundry days. Missing the Kruger like crazy. Please if you can more blogs on whats happening. Pics of wildlife would be great too. We live in White River so its like we are there with you as know exactly places you are talking about.

  11. Auch ich freue mich jeden Tag diese tollen Abenteuer aus dem Kruger zu haben. Ich kann es mir so gut vorstellen.
    Bin auch sehr gespannt, wie und wann es in Südafrika weiter geht. Wir haben immer noch einen gebuchten Flug mit allem drum und dran am 19.08.2020. Aber jeden Tag wird es unwahrscheinlicher. Wir würden so gerne wieder zu euch kommen. Im Moment werden auch in Deutschland die Zahlen besser. Ein bisschen Hoffnung.

    1. Guten Tag Dorothe, und vielen dank! I hope you don’t mind me answering in english.
      At this stage we don’t know when the park is going to open again. I hope your planned holiday in August can happen!
      Stay safe! Best, Linda

  12. Will be interested to know how you manage getting the kids to and from school since it sounds like phase 4 is opening schools. Your blogs have been a lifesaver along with WildEarth safaris live.

    1. Hi Karen, our boys go to school in Malelane about 10 km from our home at the gate. It looks like grade R will only start in June or July…😥

  13. I am a nature freak. I am staying in Woodland Hills Wildlife Estate near Bloemfontein. Although we only have some buck species like Swartwitpens I miss it to be outside in nature. Enjoy your laundry days and thank you for your stories. I enjoy it very much.

  14. Hallo Linda
    Lekker to follow your trips in the Park. I had the prevalidge to grow up outside Kruger Gate. Under stand your excitement of nature!! Pls keep it up for us!!!

  15. Love that your laundry days bring us such pleasure. The Kruger is an amazing place to visit. My husband and I look forward to our next visit. Keep the posts coming. Thank you.

  16. Wow Linda. Ek het nou elke oomblik van die trip saammet jou beleef. Voel of ek in die motor was en kon die opgewondenheid aanvoel in die teenwoordigheid van die pragtige swartmaanhaar leeu. Dankie. Dit help so baie in die moeilke grendeltyd. Groete vanuit Lindley

  17. I must admit when I read your laundry day trips, of feeling somewhat worried that being so isolated at the camp, something may happen to you whilst sitting on the bench waiting for the wash to end. I do hope someone is nearby in case of an emergency. Having said all that, love the blog, love Kruger and cannot wait to get back. Was there first week last December. Stay safe.

  18. Another great laundry day. Glad to hear it was the garden at Malelane Gate, for a moment I thought the animals had free reign to the camps as well. Wonder if the electric fences are still on.
    Thanks Linda.

  19. Your writing is so entertaining. KP is my favourite relaxation destination. We were there a week before lockdown. It’s amazing how no traffic is bringing back the freedom to roam for the animals. The way it should be. Keep writing.

  20. Good Morning Linda
    What a wonderful morning for you. As we all know laundry days are not the most exciting even in our own homes. But to have the wildlife on your doorstep is an added bonus.
    Take care have a fab day.
    Regards Diane

  21. Thank you Linda for your updates and blog. Just love them. You bring Kruger to us. Take care and please keep up the stories.

  22. Kruger park is my favorite park!! I love it especially the sunset drive and night drive was awesome. And a big thank you very much to latest sightings team as well for the hard work .. hope to see Kruger park soon

  23. Ooh what a story Linda I love going to Kruger National Park I love animals.
    Enjoy and hope to meet with you after lockdown bye!

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