As I’m terribly late with all the posts, my first statement is that I’m back home, have slept 14 hours straight after travelling for over two days and have uploaded all the photos I was supposed to. Yet, I’m coming to describe my last two weeks of the trip, which ran a lot too fast.

I arrived at Antelope Park on Saturday to start my volunteering experience. It was my second time there, and immediately I felt I was where I should be.

This Saturday, apart from some induction sessions, was continued in the city, where after a bit of shopping we went to the Mkoba Boys Orphanage which changed tremendously. It was repainted, some renovations took place, and with constant help of Antelope Park I saw those young boys now having a chance – they were breeding chickens for sale, and a vegetable garden was just being built. (do you build a garden? started, anyway). It was lovely to see.

My day was highlighted by a walk with lions that I haven’t seen for 9 months, Lewa and Laili. I could post hundreds of photos of them, but here’s a sample.

Laili on the climbing tree

Lewa (left, smaller) and Laili (right) just after the sunrise

After a series of inductions, the work began split evenly between lion-related and not, out of which some things are pleasant, some are not. I will give a few words on the usual activities in a second, but first I must say I’ve seen Paza and Penya after 9 months and they’re huge and much more mature and are doing very well!


Paza's grumpy face

Penya (on top) and Paza (below her)

Paza (front), Penya (right), me (background and unimportant xD)

So, these are my babies for the time being.

Most frequent activities in the park:

1. Water/BPG – cleaning enclosures and bringing water for the fully grown lions

2. Lion feeding, which is highlighted by visits to the butchery, wallowing knee-deep in all the awful (intestines, lungs, etc, non fit for human consumption):

which is fun, apparently, or has to be, otherwise you’d be sick, so there’s lots of jokes and ‘look at this tiny little foot! careful, it’s a baby!’ involved.

All the unpleasant things are mixed nicely with pure-fun activities, such as horse rides, even at night, elephant rides, walks with lions, etc. The next post will involve such highlights. I need to go and unpack, for the time being.