Out of Africa

Crocodiles at sunset on the Rufigi River

For our honeymoon, Husband and I went on a three week walking safari in Africa...in the Selous Game  Reserve in Tanzania 

One of those trips of a lifetime that you have the wisdom (thanks to Husband) to take when 

a)  you're young enough to both enjoy and endure it

b)  you're young enough to recognize the need for spending that kind of $$$ for an experience BEFORE you're old enough to be thinking about how that $$$ would translate into a semester's worth of pricey tuition or 401K contribution (or, for that matter, a summer cabin in Colorado...)

c) you're young enough not to have children...yet,

but wise enough to know that you'd want to tell them about a place like this some day...

Not surprisingly, I brought back much from this trip.  A treasure trove of memories,

a fear of hyena laughter while peeing in the dark,

an appreciation for afternoon tea, roasted cashews and coconut,

and evening cocktails 

listening to the larger than life stories of African guides, porters and gun bearers. 

The experience more than lived up to the romance-meets-'bush-camp luxury'-meets-a once in a lifetime adventure promise of every African Safari.  

In primitive conditions especially, one appreciates and admires the effort it takes to pull off the luxury part.  The small ones no less than the large.

And when little touches, little luxuries are accompanied by the unusual, or at least, the unfamiliar, it can make quite an impression.

I'd never had a Vegamite sandwich, been exposed to Nuttella spread, had water buffalo spaghetti...

or experienced such an abundance and variety of insect life trying to dive bomb into my morning juice or evening wine.

Enter a new-to-me, charming little problem solver.

Beaded doilie covers for beverage glasses and pitchers. Find some charming ones here if you get as annoyed with drunken gnats as I do.

I found a set of these in a Dublin shop years ago, but put them in a linen drawer and promptly forgot them.  I came across them this summer and

was instantly transported back to that exotic place.

I finally put them to use battling my own kitchen and garden wildlife.

Lesson learned?

Such lovelies are meant to be used

not stuffed in a drawer for some non specific occasion in the future. 

How else can they evoke such happy memories

Out of Africa.

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