We had just finished relaxing in the lounge area and decided to make our way back to our room. Here at Duma Tau there are 10 tents, all connected by a raised boardwalk. Our eyes darted left and right to catch any glimpses of what may be lurking in this sparse dry vegetation. We had arrived in Botswana in summertime and the land was parched.
I felt alive, every noise, smell and sight excited my senses. As if I had been blind all my life and suddenly I was seeing the world for the first time. Through curious eyes I surveyed my surroundings and with elephantine ears I listened intently to every sound. I was completely in tune with my surroundings.
The luxurious tents were all strategically positioned along the edge of the Osprey lagoon. Our tent (number 7) came complete with its very own Kudu. His gentle eyes focused on us as we stopped short to let him continue to nibble at the bushes. Eventually he slowly moved further away as he browsed on various bushes. We opened the wooden door to be greeted by a spacious, canvas tent, with en suite.
Beautifully and simplistically decorated with a shady timber decking that overlooked the lagoon.
Let’s face it, I didn’t come to Duma Tau because of the luxury accommodation, beautiful staff and outstanding guides, but it would be remiss of me if I did not mention their hospitality. Which was top class. – It was the landscape and wildlife that drew me to this area of Botswana.
Excited by the euphoria you get when in Africa, we promptly positioned ourselves on the verandah, to take in the sights, whilst we enjoyed our afternoon relax before our next game drive.
Pied Kingfishers darted back and forth from the surface of the water whilst Carmen Bee Eaters rested on Papyrus grass. Egyptian Geese floated by and a Go-Away bird came to visit. We watched them just a couple of feet away from our decking. Magical, I thought to my self.
The Osprey Lagoon has been a permanent source of water for the Elephants and along the boardwalk there are cut outs, so that elephant traffic can pass through freely to and from the water. On several occasions we were mesmerised by huge bodies that would appear out of the scrub and into the cut out. Cautiously, on all occasions, we would step back and give the Ellies the respect that they deserved.
From our tent we were treated to several joyous affairs. We were first alerted to the Ellies when we heard loud chomping and then splashing . Ellies were entering the water. Slowly they made their way deeper and deeper into the depths of the lagoon. They had a glorious time frolicking in the water. They would jump up on each others backs, and at times be completely submerged using their trunks as a periscope.
I had to pinch myself as all these treats played out for us as we relaxed on our decking. During the day it was pure delight, but night-time was another story. After dinner we were escorted back to our tent by torch-light . Excitedly we prepared for bed. But who could sleep the lagoon was alive with life. I felt more alive than ever before. Like a young child excitedly waiting for Christmas morning to unwrap the presents. I was filled with pure joy and excitement with the activity of the night.
Frogs bellowed close to our tent all through the night. I heard guests the following morning say what a nuisance they were, but for me they were a harmonic symphony and I enjoyed the whole show. Close to midnight, I heard chomping at our decking. Soggy feet splashed through the water. Hippo were passing by enjoying their nightly feed. You could hear them cutting the grass and breathing, I was ecstatic. Early morning Elephant browsing on branches came close, my heart raced with excitement. A low rumble and wanted to go out and greet them, but of course I remained respectful. Around 3am I heard a distant lion roar and shortly after that, the heckle of Hyena’s.
Why am I stuck in my tent I thought, so much of life is going on outside and I wanted to be a part of it all. . I officially lost my heart to Africa. I was smitten.
I was up at 4am, I had received no sleep, yet I wasn’t even tired. I enthusiastically wrote in my journal of the nights delights. I was high on Africa as it pumped through my veins. Our room with a view was a window to nature, a window to adventure, a window to raw, rich beauty.
Thank you to the beautiful staff at Duma Tau.
A special thank you “ke a leboga” to Lazi for a life changing experience.