I’m a Discovery and Learning Officer for ZSL London Zoo, and when I’m not teaching education sessions at the zoo, I spend some of my time helping out with a conservation education project in the North Luangwa National Park in Zambia. This, however, is the first time I have actually been to Zambia, and I can’t contain my excitement to be nearly there.
We touch down at Mfuwe airport at 1pm, and I am met by a super-friendly guide from the tourist camp where I will be spending my first night, before I start work properly tomorrow. I bundle into the four wheel drive vehicle with two other guests, and we set off on the 45 minute journey to the camp, bristling with anticipation as our guide tells us we might even see some animals on the way!
Sure enough, after passing through the small roadside shacks of Mfuwe town, we see yellow baboons, a Thornicroft giraffe, and even an African elephant. It’s strange to think that less than a day ago I was back in grey, rainy London, and now I am travelling along a dusty, orange track in the sweltering heat of the midday sun, in the heart of Africa.
As if I needed any reminder of how far I am from home, the first thing I see on my arrival at the camp is an elephant and her calf standing right outside my tent. After waiting cautiously for them to amble away, I go in and put down my bags, but there’s no time for hanging around, as I’m being picked up soon to go on an evening wildlife drive, and get a taste for what the Zambian bush has to offer.
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