More Confusion

Wednesday, February 27, 2013
Arusha Region, Tanzania
After yesterday excitement we had a bit of a lie in, then down the lake and got some nice pictures of flamingos and a line of wildebeest crossing the lake. Next we drove up to the Naabi Hill checkpoint to find out where our next camp site was (no joy) but in doing so we found a list which showed that many of the special camp sites had had name changes, all the maps and signposts are in the old version. Last night Omaha had taken us to the right place, if we had seen this table, or Safari Drive had told us we could have found it ourselves!
Along the road from Naabi Hill there were 10 safari vehicles all looking at one cheetah. He was right next to the road, perhaps he knows he will attract attention but in turn that will blind his prey, they don't associate cars with danger. We took a couple of pictures and then drove on to find our camp site. We were there by 12.30, unfortunately so were a gang of workers putting up a tented village. It looks like we are double booked.
Went to the Ranger Post which is nothing of the sort, it is three bedrooms where rangers sleep. The ranger I found was not very helpful and just gave me the number of the office to ring. There is no mobile phone signal in this part of the Serengeti. I was beginning to have one of my turns so we tried calling Liz in Arusha on the satellite phone, no answer, so I called their office in the UK. Ollie said he would get back to me. He rang back 10 minutes later to say the person who does the booking had spoken to the rangers by radio and I should go and see them. Back to see the rangers, no message received. On the phone to Ollie again, told him to chase the man again and to get a positive reply before calling me back again. 20 minutes later he called to say it should be OK, spoke to another ranger – no message has come through but he took it on himself to do some chasing.
After about half an hour of radio chatter he and a ranger called Ronald decided to set us up in a “special” special campsite, all sorted by 3pm but another frustrating afternoon. Ollies only contribution was to suggest we go to Moru 4 which were originally booked into. I pointed out we were moved for a reason so presumably even if it was empty now the chances are before nightfall someone else would turn up and quite rightly expect to be able to camp there – so a completely daft and unhelpful suggestion. Later we met two couples in a Safari Drive Land Rover, they seemed to not be having the same troubles as us. Our new “Special” special campsite was fine, it was a little windy but we got a good nights sleep and if any animals passed in the night we didn't hear them.
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