It isn't so great to be sick with a cough and a fever, but especially on a study abroad program. Maybe it was from the jet lag and not getting enough sleep, but about 5 of us came down with some nasty coughs and, in order to preserve the rest of the crew from getting it as well, our professors thought it wise to quarantine us in a separate van from all the others. We drove for about 7-8 hours all the way to Murchison Falls National Park where we would be staying the next two nights. I was not going to let this sickness prevent me from enjoying myself while here, so I, along with everybody else, slept the whole way there. It was actually very relaxing. Then we came up to the national park gate where we had to wait for about an hour while our professors took care of some business before we could enter. Lucky that because as we were driving, we had to stop because there were three elephants crossing the road. There was a mommy with a little tiny baby and what seemed like an adult. It was just the cutest thing.
Our first night at the park we stayed in little huts that were pretty comfortable, except for the millions of flying ants, which don't bite, they are just annoying, and many geckos climbing up the walls. Not only that, but as we were walking back from dinner, there was a giant hippo eating grass right infront of our hut. The owner told us to be aware of them since they are known to be very violent, so me and my hut buddy, Sin, had no idea how we were going to get inside since it was right infront of the door. We just sneakily slid our bodies across the hut, tiptoeing on the grass, until we came to the door. It was quite the experience, but also quite terrifying. Man they have some HUGE teeth.
The next day, we went on a safari. We actually got to sit on top of our vans because there wasn't any thing dangerous that could attack us. Just maybe one or two lions which we saw. One was even eating a kob which it freshly caught. The amazing thing about our trip is that we saw many many many giraffes. We even got to see them run which is quite impressive if you have never seen it before. Even our guide said he had never seen so many giraffes before and that they all came out just for us "sickies", which is how we were labeled by everyone else in our group. We even saw a herd of elephants which is apparently really rare since the elephants are experiencing a decrease in population. It's good to know there are still quite a few out there.
Next we hit the Nile River on a boat tour to see the hippos and the Nile Crocs which are the second largest crocodile in the world. We saw tons of hippos and even got the chance to watch a hippo chase away some warthogs that was on it's territory. They are frightening creatures. Then we made it to the huge water fall that practically looked like a waterslide on steroids. We couldn't get to close because the boats couldn't handle the pressure from the falls. On our way back we saw the hugest crocodile I ever saw. And we got super close to it. I though it was going to charge at any moment. Wow!
The next day we were all feeling much better, and we even picked up two extra crew members from Germany because their tour bus broke down. It was great because we had a german speaker among us who just got off her mission from germany, so it was great. We also had a great surprise from our professors. We went to a rhino sanctuary and got to see about 6 white rhinos. They were pronounced extinct in Uganda around the 1980's but they brought in many others from around the world to bring them back into existence.
Then that night, we saw the greatest show ever. It was a cultural show where we saw dances from all around Africa and the MC was the funniest guy ever. He made jokes about pronunciation, about how developed countries are not relaxed, but they are...you had to be there to get it, but he kept us laughing the whole time. The men came out playing drums on top of there head at one point. All us girls were definitely paying attention. haha! At the end, we all got to go down and dance with the dancers. It was just one heck of a night. Good thing I wasn't sick anymore.