|Brown breasted barbet|
We were woken early by bird calls close by. It sounded like geese or hornbills, so out we went
in our jammies to see if we could spot whatever, flying over. To start with we couldn’t, but then something flew into a big tree not far away. I shout- whispered ‘Peacocks!’ – totally the wrong continent for them, though. When we got the binos on them, we found that it was the Hadada ibis making all the noise, and they climbed up and down the branches of the tree. We could hear a noise in a tree very near to the bungalow. On close inspection we spotted a beautiful bird hiding in the upper branches – and it was a Hartlaub’s turaco. It has very precise markings on its head that look as if they are painted on. It was fabulous to see it so close – but we hardly dared move or it would just fly away, so no photographs, just a wonderful memory! A fascinating start to the day. We showered and went for breakfast. While over at the lodge, they ask us again about leaving, and end up phoning the office and get Alan to speak to them. They still say they will come at 17.30, which reception still thinks is a bit late. But that’s all we can do. We had to get our bags sorted so we walk back to the bungalow. According to the plan we have the room on an extended check, so we leave the bags more or less ready and head out for another walk. This time we turn left and walk round the other way. It takes us past some coffee bushes and more of the plants we saw yesterday. We soon come into the car park by the lodge entrance, where we watch sunbirds flittering about the bushes. At the other side if the road is another track, so we follow that round and find that we have joined up with the track from yesterday. Half way up the hill we spot some amazing birds – red and white, which we discover, are brown breasted barbet and try to photograph them – a rather blurred attempt! We come round full circle and turn down the path back to the bungalow. We decide that a late lunch would be good, and walk over to the lodge. We can order from their snack menu – burgers/ fish and chips, which sounds good. While we are there the driver-guide that brought Alan’s sticks drops by to say someone will collect us later and by the way here is Honest’s business card, which he would like us to have! Then he’s away again. We finish lunch, go back to the bungalow and by 4pm we are ready to get ourselves and the bags to reception to check out. There are plenty of people arriving and some others leaving, so the time must be right. Shortly, a driver arrives to take us to the airport and we bid farewell to the relaxing Moivara Lodge. Kilimanjaro puts in a farewell appearance and we arrive at the airport in plenty of time for our flight, and our check in has indeed happened, so we have our seats. Others have not been so lucky and couples have seats at opposite ends of the plane. Don’t suppose it really matters if you plan to sleep your way to Europe! It has been an amazing experience and we feel very proud of what we have achieved with the help of our guides and our tour company, Go2Tanzania.