Day 20: Building a home

A weaver bird hard at work on a nest to attract a mate.
A weaver bird hard at work on a nest to attract a mate.

This morning I awoke in a B&B nestled amidst a huge citrus orchard. I also awoke in a room with an extra guest: a bat. Seems bats like the many insects they can find in a orchard; they also like to hang out (pun intended) in the cabins in the B&B. I know I had a visitor for two reasons: (1) its noise woke me in the middle of the night; and (2) the counter beneath the highest point of the ceiling had many tiny nuggets of evidence that something had been with me in the room.

Tonight I go to sleep in a B&B on the shore of the Indian Ocean in Durban, South Africa. No bats here, but I am enjoying the sound of the waves rolling, rolling, rolling into shore.

There were other natural noises I heard last night and this morning, particularly the cries and chirps of a dozen or so weaver birds busy at work in a tree right outside my room. Apparently these birds build a nest which is then inspected by a prospective mate. If she likes what she sees, she moves in. If not, the weaver has two — or sometimes three — more attempts to win her approval. According to Rod (one of my hosts at the B&B), the females are quite picky about the design, the choice of materials, the location, and even the speed of construction.

I write this well aware that for the past two and half weeks I’ve been quite fortunate to stay at some very nice places, most of them offering fabulous rooms and delicious breakfasts. Tomorrow, however, I take up a new home (and a roommate — or even two!). While I’m sure the accommodations at Thanda will be perfectly fine, they will be different. And less sophisticated. And more rugged.

For example, as Thanda is in an arid part of the country, the water supply is not always reliable. I’m not sure how I’ll handle being told that showers are NOT available.

I’m also told that internet access, while available, is not particularly fast or robust. In other words, there may be days when I’d really like to get online and blog about my day and share a photo (or two) but simply won’t be able to do so. If you have been gracious enough to be regular reader, let me apologize in advance for possibly not being a regular writer for the next few weeks.

You know, I started researching this project a year ago. As I learned more about Thanda and the Photography and Conservation Project the more excited I became. Now that the project is about to begin, I am, I admit, a little apprehensive. But, hey, I’ve survived lost luggage, a busted tire, and a bashed thumb while enjoying an incredible range of amazing experiences. Can’t imagine that changing!

I will keep you posted as I am able. And again, thanks for reading!

3 thoughts on “Day 20: Building a home

  1. I must have Googled the wrong Thanda Game Preserve. Your description did not fit the luxury accommodations I saw. Hope you can continue your blogs. I google all the places you mention and look forward to your entries every day. What a time you are having!!!

  2. Enjoyed your blog at a friend’s house. Love the pictures, especially the beautiful bird and animals. Miss You. Tippy Roach

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