Happy New Year! The entire team at Gwango sends our best wishes for the coming year.
While we are enjoying many priceless moments on safari with our friends from across the globe, we still have lots of projects underway at Gwango. The main building in the lodge (we call it the Stone House), now has a gourmet kitchen which looks out to an impressive dining room. Upstairs we've built a breakfast area and the Giraffe Lounge, featuring a rustic fireplace and views of the pan. We've also completed the Forest Chalets situated in the main area, each with en suite bathrooms, private verandas and added comforts.
Every day here brings surprising new sightings - but the start of the wet season brought us our first chance to see the forest clothe itself in a rich array of green. In the early mornings we witnessed a carpet of grass appearing almost overnight with leaves filling the empty spaces on the trees. I have to say that this is unquestionably my favourite time of the year!
The first rains also brought a miriad of insects, reptiles and amphibians which we had not seen during the dry season. With insects flourishing, birds are everywhere, many coming from afar - dancing amidst the trees and decorating the pan with their vibrant colors. It really is rather magical!
Perhaps our most memorable experience so far this year was a surprise visit at the lodge by an elephant who we have now named "Mngane', which means "friend" in the Ndebele language.
Mngane visits the lodge frequently at night. We hear him munching on the trees nearby and often see his shadow. However, on one occasion early this month, he decided to spend an entire morning grazing right outside our room! He then walked around the Forest Chalets stepping elegantly over the walkways and stopping to graze a little more - right outside the dining room. All this as we were preparing to bid a fond farewell to our guests. What an exciting farewell for Emma, Ben, Biandri and James!
Cheers for now,