Friday, 12 January 2007

Out of Africa - take 2

Having left my knee high beige suede boots behind this time, I set off for Johannesburg with a plane full of booze hounds. 7.5 hours later, we landed and made our way to the hotel, changed in record time and set out for dinner. The Bull Run is the local restaurant frequented by crew and in my opinion serves the BEST steak in the world.

Barely looking at the menu, I ordered the 320 gram fillet, mash potato and black pepper sauce. The place was packed and it seemed as though my stomach was going to start eating itself before the meal arrived. When it finally did, we all tucked in and there wasn't much talking! Words cannot describe the fantabulousness of a Bull Run steak, so I wont even try.

We all tottered back to the hotel after several bottles of red wine and sank into bed. Up bright and early, we headed out to the Lion Park, a fantastic zoo that has .... you guessed it LIONS.

The Lion Park is also home to giraffes, hyenas, zebras, springbok, jackals, cheetas and all sorts of fantastic African creatures. We embarked on a drive through the lion enclosures, where we saw normal lions and the rarer white lions. White lions are often mistaken for being albino, but this is not the case. Apparently the gene that causes the white fur is similar to the gene responsible for red hair in humans.

Sitting majestically in our path was the biggest male lion in the park, and he watched us approach and then moseyed out of the way as though he hadn't a care in the world. The lions are fed once a week, and we were there about 3 days after the feeding. Apparently they just gorge themselves and then lie around for the better part of the week and then get ready for feeding again. What a life!

It was a balmy day, with a nice breeze and the big cats were just lying in the sun and shade, climbing trees and generally just snoozing.

We drove through the rest of the park, spotting the above mentioned animals grazing and sparing and headed to the cub enclosure. I was thrilled to find the cubs were all awake and waiting to play with us. Not really, they'd probably just as soon nibble on my arm if they were hungry!

Last time I was there, they were sleeping, so we didn't have any interaction. They were very curious about us, meeting us at the gate and tripping up the guide. Some were camped out at the fence, panting and the others were pacing up and down, making the cutest growling noises ever!

We had about 10 minutes in there and snapped away, patted them and cooed over their course hair and spotty legs.

From there we hit the souvenir shop where I bought another magnet to add to my collection.

I don't go to Joburg very often, as the flight can be lethal but I do endeavour to go again soon, to stock up on wine and get another good feed......

No comments: