My Uganda Memoir: Face to Face With A Rhino Called Obama

February 12, 2017: Today, we came face to face with a rhino called Obama at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary…

***

We were up early again and out of Paraa Safari Lodge. The others from Pakuba Safari Lodge came to meet us at the banks of the Nile, as we waited to cross the river for the last time – until we come around this way again.

The moon was still visible in the sky while we waited for the ferry to arrive from the other side on its first trip of the day. The sun however remained hidden away, making it the first time we crossed the river early without a glimpse of a stunning sunrise.

Obama
The moon waited to bid us farewell…
Obama
…the sun however remained hidden…
…and the ferry arrives from the Southern banks on its first trip for the day…
…sailing on the ferry. Still no sign of the sun…
Approaching the southern banks…

Once we got to the other side, we disembarked from the ferry and got in our various vehicles and we were off. After about a 2-hour drive, we arrived at Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary where we were very warmly welcomed by Angela Genade the director.

Prof chatting with Angie…
Obama

We undertook a brisk info tour of the sanctuary and among things learnt, we found out Prof was instrumental to its establishment and served as founding director.

The Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary was established for the reintroduction of rhinos back into Uganda, after they were wiped out. The sanctuary got some rhinos from Kenya and America, and the first rhino born in the sanctuary was interracial. His mother, Nandi was donated by Disney Animal Kingdom, Florida while the father is from Kenya, and he was duly named Obama.

Cephas Shonhiwa, MD of Malachite Travel & Tours, Zimbabwe

We went on a trek to spot the rhinos, although we didn’t have the privilege of identifying each one of them specifically. Afterwards, we took a short drive down to the nearby Amuka Safari Lodge where we had a good lunch at the restaurant. We embarked on a site inspection of the accommodation facility after lunch, before we set off on our journey to Kampala.

Lunch…
Site inspection…
Site inspection done. We’re ready to continue our journey to Kampala…

We arrived Kampala and were checked in into the Kampala Sheraton Hotel after about a 4-hour drive. After a 2-hour rest, we were summoned to one of the restaurants for dinner at 19:00 hours. By this time all the groups had arrived in Kampala from their respective familiarization tour destinations.

Check in. Kampala Sheraton…
With Mark and Hazel from SA at dinner…

We learnt at dinner that we would be heading off to Jinja the next morning to discover the source of the Nile and find out why Jinja is referred to as the Adventure Capital of East Africa – perfect for my birthday, I guess!

*****

ITB India

Accra Weizo 2023
Coming soon! The autobiography: “Alain St. Ange, My Journey”

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