04.26.2017 25 °C
After another great breakfast at Khweza we got picked up by Anne's favourite taxi driver to take us to the David Sheldrick Elephant Orphanage. The drive went through parts of Nairobi we hadn't yet seen, so that was good to get in on our last day. We arrived at the Center through the Nairobi National Park and they have a gorgeous view of the park. We were two of many, many mzungus and it felt weird! We haven't been used to that for two weeks and we both had an uneasy feeling about it.
The centre was full of nature; we paid our small fare to get in and we situated ourselves around the roped off area. The baby elephants came running down this little path and they knew the drill to turn and go straight to the handlers for their bottles. They were SO CUTE and ranged from 3-15 months.
They all have different stories on what brought them to the centre. Some had fallen down a well, some were caught in traps, some had their mothers killed by poachers or by the drought this year.
They were all really cute to watch. The centre encourages us to keep as quiet as we can so that the elephants don't get disturbed. It is their goal to get each orphan adopted by a family in the wild. They start introducing them around two years and I think he said it takes up to another 15 months for the animal to be completely wild. It sounds like they do some great work and work closely with a lot of organizations to keep poaching and snaring down for all animals.
The babies loved to eat and sort of push each other around, and near the end they would flop onto their sides in the mud and water and just play and stomp their feet to splash, it was so cute!
We left a few minutes early to avoid the crowd and we headed back downtown. We had a drink at our bar and contemplated whether or not our bus tickets for that evening were legitimate or not. Peter, our taxi driver, had warned us about paper tickets. And when we bought them we went to that specific kiosk because online it said it had a day time bus. The big well known coaches didn't, and we wanted to travel during the day. But when we got there they said no buses run during the day to Kampala. They had a little cubby and the man worked behind metal bars, it wasn't like the last coach office at all. But we had bikes waiting for us at the time so we just booked it there.
Anyways, a little foreshadowing there for you. Back to the bar - we finished our drinks and I wanted to shop for a cute dress on the walk back to our hotel. We pass by the shops every day but we never stop to look and they have the cutest stuff. On the way home however it was rush hour, Nairobi style, which means both cars and foot traffic. All of the vendors spilled into the streets making the sidewalks extra narrow, and making it easier for the vendors to call out for you or even to grab you. I was not about to shop in this insane environment, so I gunned it for home. I ended up with no clothing items from Kenya.
We had one final meal in our hotel, delicious as usual, and we headed out via taxi to our bus station. I write this on the bus, I'll post it once we get to Kampala. More on the bus trip in the next post.