It’s Monday 11 September 2017 and home to Nsefu

I do hope that you are all fabulously well and have had yet another wonderful weekend. This week I am not going to procrastinate and instead shall promptly hand you all over to the second part of Neil Andrews’ trip to the Luangwa with friends Ian and Jane. So Neil over to you:

“After a four-day mobile walking safari, Jane, Ian and I had two further days within South Luangwa … to be spent at Nsefu.

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It felt like coming home, and not solely because Sebastian was there to greet us as we reached the other side of the Luangwa, but it was of course great to meet up with Sebastian again, as well as Julius and Braston, all who had the experience of guiding us over the years. The three of us are RPS veterans, in our own terms, not necessarily in those of RPS where I believe some guests have been returning for decades.

But Nsefu felt like home, those beautiful historic rooms, adapted to modern needs yet maintaining that connection to history; the bar and lounge area with the always active waterhole to your right, and of course, the ever-changing Luangwa River in front of you… to the left and right? Magical.

On top of all this there were safari drives.

During our South Luangwa stay, seven nights in total, we saw over one hundred bird species, which Sebastian thought was excellent for August-time. I am a self-confessed bee-eater addict and we saw the start of the return of the carmines, whilst the white-fronted were already flocking around their cliff-side nests. One evening on our return to camp we saw six little bee-eaters snuggled up together on a branch… a behaviour I had only previously witnessed on cold dawn mornings. There is always something new and different to experience on safari – believe your eyes more than what you read in the text books!

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It is always interesting to note what the bird books do and don’t pick up in regards to the changes in plumage throughout a bird’s year. And as for the name changes … I shall remain silent on the matter (which hopefully says it all) and think instead of the stunning white-bellied sunbird that allowed itself to be photographed in all its resplendent glory.

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I must admit that my own favourite sighting during the course of the Nsefu stay was that of a beautiful female leopard investigating a crocodile corpse on the Luangwa’s sandy shore … she was initially not one hundred percent sure that the huge reptile was indeed dead … scaring herself whilst in the process of investigating.

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We came across numerous giraffe of all shapes and sizes from toy shop juveniles to gnarled old males, the latter’s heads resembling knobbly tree bark.

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Whilst all the elephant herds seem to have at least one year old youngster in their midst, and Jason Alfonsi’s soothing voice reassured mothers and matriarch alike that we came in peace. (This reminded me of the lioness Lady Liuwa, and the way she used to succumb to Jason’s dulcet tones on Liuwa Plain.)

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The morning tea breaks were always special too as the flora came under closer scrutiny, as did the insect life amongst the leaf litter.

And finally; sunsets and sundowners looking up the Luangwa, the ever-changing hues as the orb that is the sun sinks behind the far tree line. When Jane, Ian and I state that we had been away far too long.”

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Wow thanks so much Neil, it sounds like you guys had the most amazing time with such varied and wonderful sightings, we really appreciate you sharing this with us.

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So I shall not even embark on any further tales as Neil really has hit the nail on the Luangwa head, so instead I will bid you all an extremely fond farewell and wish you all a wonderful week ahead with plenty of smiles and laughter.

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