Saying hello to lions

Pictures from an overnight safari in Chobe National Park, Botswana.

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Why did the elephant cross the campground?

Because it can, and nobody else is big enough to tell it to leave.

I woke up on our last morning at South Luangwa National Park and was about to head over to the lounge to check my email when a large shadow loomed behind me in the early dawn. I turned around. An elephant, closing in quickly.

I was on the other side of Morgan’s tent, so I said calmly and with authority, “Morgan, DO NOT GET OUT OF YOUR TENT. THERE IS AN ELEPHANT.”

Then calmly and with authority, I bolted.

As I looked back in bemusement and awe and not a small amount of trepidation, the elephant loped steadily right between the ten-foot gap between Morgan’s tent and mine. I had to pinch myself to make sure this was really happening.

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Peering out of Holly's and Meggan's tent at a second approaching elephant

This is a commonplace occurrence at Croc Valley Lodge, the staff breezily assured us as we spent the next hour watching, mouths agape and camera shutters flashing, as four elephants casually stripped leaves off of the adjacent trees.

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The sheer ridiculousness of the situation was cast in more full light after the sun rose

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Our camp intruder passing back across our campsite

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They never asked us if we wanted to take out damage insurance - 5c. Trampled by elephant

On safari

I’m at South Luangwa National Park in Eastern Province right now, where I met up with Holly, Meggan, and Morgan after 22 hours of riding in buses from Nshinda to Mansa to Lusaka to Chipata. It’s been a great trip with amazing scenery, fantastic food, and hilariously irreverent friends.

A few pictures from our first day of game drives. To view the entire gallery click here.