Our ‘picnic’ at Maasai Mara was like no other and hence, requires a dedicated post. We were scheduled for the full-day safari that day, and Danielle had told us that he would make sure that our hotel (Read: Review of Keekorok Lodge) packed lunch for us. We didn’t even have to enquire…when we hopped into the jeep that morning, he cheerfully told us that we could drive deep into the Mara since food and water had been taken care of …And thus we set out to see the wonders of the beautiful Maasai Mara…..
At noon, when it was time for lunch, nay, the famed picnic at Maasai Mara, he drove us to a huge clearing where the grasses weren’t very tall and the trees were fewer. Driving up to more or less the centre of the clearing, he parked the jeep near an Acacia tree and announced that this would be our picnic spot. But not before telling us that while we could get down into the Mara, we couldn’t venture out even five steps owing to the safety requirements and the Mara rules. Lunch had to eaten right next to the jeep. We obeyed him like school kids…
Digging out a mat from the back of the jeep, Danielle laid it down by the side of the jeep and then placed our lunch boxes on the mat – Sandwiches, Grilled Chicken, Fruits, Eggs, Juice, Cookies — this picnic at Maasai Mara is like the Famous Five picnics, cried out our daughter. We looked at her thoroughly amused and nodding in agreement…quite an Enid Blyton picnic this…
Here we were, sitting in the middle of one of the world’s wildest grounds, eating sandwiches, while birds flew down looking for crumbs, while elephants walked in the distant, while deers stood to see what we were and then ran away, while Danielle stood near the bonnet of the jeep looking out for the wilder animals, while we looked around 360 degrees to find only God’s creation, while it felt as if our very existence would be defined by this one moment when we were one with the Mara, while we thanked the Lord for this day and bread….
Dos and Don’ts of a Picnic at Maasai Mara, Kenya
- DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT litter the Mara. Carry a bag along with you to carry back empty bottles, empty packets, food covers.
- Cookies and bread crumbs can be given to the birds though, and that chicken bone can be thrown towards the waiting hyena or vulture. Mind you, only little items of food.
- Do not venture out away from your jeep. Obey your guide, for he knows the Mara’s ways.