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  • Bruce, Judy, Justin and Sabre. I am so sorry for not getting back to you sooner. I have no excuse. However, I do want to thank you for the wonderful experience I had while at your place. Your place had to be the highlight of the trip. And thank you for making the cake for my birthday. That was so nice. Also thank you to Justin and Sabre for giving up their Sunday. By now you have probably forgotten who I am. Hello to mamasinna (?spelling) and Thankyou for all the good food. Did your son ever get his papers he needed? Should have stayed in Africa-we've had no spring and its pouring today. Looks like we may not even get a summer. No point in complaining-BUT. Also enjoyed the talks you did in the evenings around the fire. Once again thank you so much.. Regards Linda Lamb
    - Linda Lamb, Canada
Hoedspruit Accommodation
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News & Updates

Birthday in the bush

Published 9 April 2012 under Travelogue • Comments: 1
Birthday in the bush

nDzuti Safari Camp is still closed after the floods in January when during the space of 18 hours Cyclone Dando rained down some some 500 mm of steady down pour. The rivers burst their banks and dam walls broke causing enormous damage to camps situated along the water courses. After the flood, we were fortunate to secure the use of a private lodge neighbouring our concession to accommodate our forward bookings and it was here that we celebrated the birthday of Megri Schmidt from Germany recently.

 

 

 

With the electricity supply damaged by the floods cooking a birthday cake was a quite challenge. I had to think back to many years ago and our first bush camp Khoka Moya in Manyeleti Game Reserve in 1988.  Here we never even dreamt of getting electric power and so cooking on the fire was second nature to us. A black cast iron pot on the fire would act as an oven and a smaller make- shift cake tin would go inside to produce an somewhat smokey and no doubt lob sided birthday cake. Visualising the process brought back yet another Khoka Moya reminiscence- the Elephant Dung birthday cake!  At the fire side at mid night with the family we plotted the birthday surprise while Megri slept on blissfully unaware.

 

 

 

The monsterous scat was smuggled back to camp in a jacket after that morning game drive, was suitably dry and predictably lob sided but had a perfect pudding- like shape otherwise, even exhibiting   a little peaked apex! Gerti Ngwenya our Smiling Chef expertly iced the “cake” with cooked meilie- meal porridge with a dash of vanilla essence for aroma. The thick porridge clung to the undigested sticks and grass in the dung and dried to form a shiny smooth surface that looked decidedly edible. The cherries she arranged transformed it into an appetising cake covered with glittering icing snow. The other birthday offering was surreptitiously baked on the fire while the guests were out on an extended game drive and the outcome was a little dull when place side by side with the sugar plum delight.

 

 

 

At dawn of the birthday the deck was decorated with balloons and the tables were set with champagne flutes, cake forks and side plates while the two cakes waited in the wings hidden in the chest freezer to keep the frosting fresh! The cork was popped and bubbles flowed into glasses. Megri was delighted with the splendid looking cake and posed with her glass and knife in hand. Then she sliced into the un-giving mass of tightly packed dried vegetation.  She immediately suspected, her eyes found mine and she burst out laughing- an unforgettable African birthday fortunately with a substitute edible cake close at hand.  

 

 

 

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Comments

Martina
Wed, 16 May 2012 22:08:41 +0200
Judy, this is a probably the only still image we have of that great and funny scene. I had the camera on video mode and did not figure out how to extract a still image that's printable ... The picture book with 50 pages just arrived from Apple. We could produce a great book with a great Dvd thanks to the almost 1000 great shots. 100 minutes funny video minutes and thanks to the great time and experiences and wildlife encounters we had with you, Bruce and Gertrud in Taurus auxilliary camp :-). we loved it and will come back and I'll send you a pdf with the book in a separate E-Mail.
all the best and big hug from Hamburg... Martina

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