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23rd Nov 2014
Day 4 - Lion Safari Park (Egg man saves the day)

Day 4 - Lion Safari. (Egg man redemes himself)

So i woke at the crack of the crows again this morning, so i thought id make some time to write as i was beginning to fall behind and i felt like the information might vanish if im not quick to get it all down, at least the facts.

I thought back over the previous days events and began thinking as i got to various points during my story how i was feeling at the time etc.

How at the start i thought sandy was basically kinda trying to pull a fast one all the time and basically playing me, just after my money etc. 'i was just another customer'. And i guess i still am just a customer in a way but i began to feel bad, for sandy, for thinking that.

I know he is after money, of course he is, and he smokes my fags quicker than i do, and i buy him water and pay for the fuel and things.. But for all of that i'm getting all his wisdom, his translational skills, his time, his security

The fact that people pester me less when we're together having a laugh. After all he had taught me and the detail we went into, which still doesnt actually scratch the surface on the subject of hunduism, really.

I enjoy the company and for what it costs me, which is no more than a few quid each day, im more than happy to pay for what he wants. He doesnt take the michael, never really extorting it from me. Just charging me what is to me pocket change.

Time began ticking by as i sat busy writing and i kept glancing out of the window to see what the weather was doing. Not much it seems, grey skies. A bit like being in england i thought. I decided i'd better get up and start my day.

I went down for breakfast. As i opened the door, the waiter walked over to me and said usual table sir. Ohh yes please. I said.

Actually my usual table wasnt vacant so he offered me an identical table next to it, telling me, "this one is better, for you sir, i think." I chuckled to myself, as his head wobbled from side to side. He pulled out my chair and i sat down.

I went to the buffet after sitting down for the obligatory 2 seconds before realising i had to get up to go to the buffet. On the way (2 steps) the lady had broght my white coffee and was already pouring it in my cup i noticed. She then began to set my table as there was only a cloth, salt, pepper etc on there.

As i went to the buffet, i was debating to go for the full english or just have toast and something..

Deciding upon full english i went to get my scrambled egg, and there was none! I was a bit late for breakfast, no so much as yesterday but it was about 10am. Just as i discovered this as if on cue, the egg man appeared having cooked some scrambled eggs for an indian couple sat behind me adjacent to the breakfast bar.

Perfect. I thought.. Go on egg man! Save the day. I approached him and asked if i could please have some scrambled egg.

"There are eggs scrambled in here sir", he lifted the lid, to find it empty, as i had done not 2 seconds before. "Oh very sorry, to you sir! I will cook them right away". And with that he left almost hurridly, to begin cooking my eggs. Hope they're better than last time i thought.

I carried on collecting my breakfast things, some sausage, i'd pre-loaded 2 pieces of toast before the egg discovery but the toaster takes a fair while to pop ur toast up. I took some fried tomatoes with cheese on, as i thought oh, maybe they dont change daily. Oh well, beans next then some potatoes. My toast popped up which reminded me to grab some butter,as i do always seem to forget then have to go back up, tho usually i just ask the lady when she pours my coffee, well it gives her sommet else to do.. Dont it! (She dont do much) Haha

So i took my seat diagonally opposite the lady who occupied the table i usually sit, whos name i later learned was Lesley.

Just then the egg man, came in with my plate of scrambled egg. I thanked him and he quickly vanished back to where he had come from.

Lesley, was clearly English it was plain to spot the uk product brand-named she had with her, for example the early grey tea bag that was spinning round in cup of hot water.. not on the selection of tea's available, i noticed so i figured she either had her own bags, or asked must've asked for it specially.. Either way English!

As i sat down i wished her a very good morning to you, and enquired if she were enjoying her time in India.

Well we quickly began chatting about the service and the quality and value for money of the hotel.
She went on to tell me that she had lost her husband a five years ago and she remaked as to how he wouldnt have wanted me to stay home, as we were always travelling together.

So you're here alone i asked, oh yes! I've been all over the world on my own in the last few years.

You all thought i was brave for coming to india on me tod! turns out she is seventy six.

Little doddery old gentle lady, and she was everso nice we, carried on chatting over breakfast and she told me of all the places she'd been to. Japan, china, sri lanka, australia, canada, africa... ANTARCTICA..

I was taken back! Seriously you've been to the Antarctic! Oh yes she said in her thick Bolton accent! Quite spectacular she said. Aurora borealis. Best i've seen in the world.

I see! So where else Have you seen it, finalnd, norway, scotland, iceland, canada of course. But the photographs that i got from the antartic were the best by far. Ive got all the pictures in me hall way. She said

We carried on chatting and she went on to say about her tuktuk driver. Turns out she has her own sandy. Such an adventurous lady, she used to be a keen motorbiker and rock-climber when she was younger, she was telling me, but she doesnt climb now cos of her hip but she still enjoys walking at the foot of the hills in the lake district where she used to climb with her two sons and her hubby.

She was saying how her version of sandy, called biju, was like her personal concierge! Mine too! I cried back with enthusiasm!

She went on.. He takes me to places, he carries my shopping bags, he opens my door for me when i go into shops.. She went on listing all the functions he performs, and as she spoke i drifted off slightly momentarily into my own subconscience.

I began to think about sandy and how he was just the same. In nearly every way she was saying. As i re-joined the conversation, buttering my toast at the same time. She told me she likes to treat him to some food so she knows he's eating properly and she bought him a new pair of sandals as his were held together by a rubber band and the band had been digging in causing him to walk with a limp.

Nice new pair of leather sandals she said, he was everso pleased. Aww thats so nice of you i said, and i began telling her of sandy and how he'd been a hero really, changing my holiday so much for the better. We had a little moment. And after breakfast i excused myself and went upstairs.

I began feeling guilty for feeling sandy was just some scam artist, so i decided today as the weather isnt particularly good i may as well be out seeing stuff not stuck in my room, truth be told i had missed the company and the laughter during the day and the information he had given me i felt was gold-dust!

I sent him a text asking him to come pick me up and soon after my doorbell (which sounds like crickets chirping) chirped into action..

Sandy! I said opening the door! Hey! Danny, how are you men. He said to me with a big smile!

I'm good thanks! We got the pleasantries out the way and having already packed my bag and only had to brush my teeth, i finished readying myself and we left.

I told sandy about the 76 year old lady who had come to india on her own and he ageeed with me that she is very brave! Very brave.

So as we arrived at the rickshaw i hopped in the back as normal telling sandy i needed to get some cash changed. I took out my days money, and as i didnt really spend any money the day before i calculated i had more than i had originally figured.

We got the money changed and jumped back in the tuktuk.. The wrong tuktuk. I leaned over to ask sandy where we were going at which point i realised.. Ur not sandy.

I jumped out of the tuktuk apologising for the inconvenience, jumped in sandys tuktuk behind and we both fell about laughing. Literally i was in stitches. Giggling away as he drove off, as he had whitnessed me entering the wrong tuktuk then getting out seconds later looking very confused.

We whizzed up the road, well kindof, to the junction, where the 5 roads vaguely meet, we waited at the lights and still i was laughing by now my sides had begin to ache as i couldnt stop thinking about what had just happened, especially when i saw the mans face and it wasnt sandy.

He crossed the busy junction with traffic overtaking us, on both sides, going in the same direction,

I took out 500rp and gave it to sandy. What is this for he enquired. Petrol i said. But you havent gone anywhere yet, he replied. No but we will need petrol so get some now and its done. Ok, we did a u-turn after a few minute wait, allowing several cars, bikes, busses and a goat to clear the way. We went back to the 5 ways junction and took a different carriageway and within moments we were at the petrol station.

We refuelled and he jumped back in. So where are we going sandy, i'd asked him three times already but he either hadnt heard me or he chose not to answer.

Today danny is big surprise. We are going far. Perhaps 45-50kms away... Oooh ok! I'll just sit back and enjoy the journey!

I kept my camera close by snapping pics as i went. I was quite excited as i knew i was going to see much more of india today. Perhaps the real india away from the tourist resorts.

Sandy told me he wanted to stop at a shop for a second or two and was it ok, sure i said, shall i wait here. No come with me if you want i will introduce my friend to you.

He seems to have friends all over the place.. We walked down the side of some shops climbed some stairs, where at the top there was a tailor man, sandy had bought some matereal recently and had taken it to his friend for him to tailor a shirt.

A few minutes later we were back in the tuktuk and journeying on.
Kapa-params i said before we got to the lights at the end of the busy street.

You want some kapa-param? He asked. Yes please, same as before he asked, yeah why not i said. Lesleys words ringing in my ears somewhat about getting a good meal etc.

We stopped, he bought some and we carried in pootling along. The weather wasnt very exciting, it hadnt rained yet but it was evidently on the way.

We drove and drove for a while exchanging the odd bit of conversation. I asked sandy how, in malyalam, would you ask for a normal banana (yellow one).

He said, its just Param. Ahh i see i said, so does Kapa mean red i asked. Yes he said. Aaah so it literally means red banana then. Exactly! He replied.

We took a few lefts and rights, slowing down to take the odd pic (867 so far and counting). And soon we came to a very narrow almost rickerty bridge tho made out of concrete.

He navigated accross and we turned the corner, carried on driving for about a half a mile, where we came to a similar rickerty bridge, we crossed this one too and then a third, as we crossed the third, sandy allowed his enging to cut out, putting his foot on the brake in 2nd gear half way accross the last of the bridge.

Can you hear that, he asked me... I could hear something but i had no idea what it could be.

Yes i said, what is it. Part of the surprise he said! Ooh i do love a surprise! We trundled on a bit more when past a left hand and then immediately a right hand bend, the noise became clearer and as we turned the next corner there it was.

It was a really big Dam! A bit like the hoover dam but on a much smaller scale.

Wow! That was pretty awesome, he yanked on the kickstart with his left arm, which really should be like popeyes (eg eg eg) but his arms are actually as thin as a drinking straw.

After a few minutes more driving almost vertically upwards at one point, sandy having to egnage 1st gear at one point to muster the climb.

When we arrived at the top we stood by the side of a huge lake. A reservoir i would imagine. I jumped out, took a few pics, asked sandy to be my photographer as he snapped away to my C&A catalogue poses.

We jumped back in, fired it up and drove for another half a mile where we came to the bottom of the lake / reservoir.

I jumped out again, handed sandy my "photo-camera" as he calls it, and carried on c&a posing as the scrnery had changed again since the previous pics.

I wanted a pic of the tuktuk so i climbed on the smal wall seperating the road from the res and sandy shot away, click click click, flash flash flash, and we were done!
No more paparazzi! I cried! Covering my face jokingly!

Before he took the pic with me and the rickshaw i fell down, my feet going from under me and i ended up scraging all my arm on the concrete wall - ouchie!

Again jumping back in the tuktuk and powering off down the, quite freshly smooth tarmac'd road, which was a first i think, after a little way we pulled over, having had more red narna's en-route.

When we pulled up we began climbing the stairs, and the sign said Crocodile sanctuary! Oh ace! Crocodiles i said.. Not just crocodiles, you will see.. He said micheviously still not giving more than he needed to away.

We were turned away at the top for not having tickets so, heading back down to the ticket shop where we were told we would have to wait. Sadly i saw a sign, ruining the surprise for sandy, whilst he was enquiring about the tickets, but i didnt let on, i quickly spun round and went outside.

He came out to me and said, we come back 15 mins after. Ok i said. He went back in and after a few minutes he returned with a printed invoice, which was our tickets. (Which he paid for out of his own money, well the money i gave him for fuel)

So Danny, he began, "i will now tell, what is the surprise" i thought for a second how that didnt really make sence gramattically but then who am i to talk..

He went on, here we have the crocodile, and here we have the dear. We must take a boat, is coming shortly first to somewhere else.

Ok. I thought, is it a lion safari park by any chance.. Still i kept quite not wanting him to be disappointed as he'd clearly put some effort into the 'surprise' prior to picking me up.

To be fair the dam itself was surprise enough but now we have lions, deer and crocs, oh my!

The boat eventually came and a few other people got on board before us not leaving much room for us to sit. In england Health and safety wouldnt have allowed as many people as were already in the boat.. But this is india, they crammed us in, people having to move legs to allow other people to squash in between them and the next person. The boat was like an old fishing boat maybe 7/8 feet long and all told there were 15 of us including the captain. So u can imagine it was rather cosy.

There was a black guy and a blonde girl from
Switzerland, a family of three men, cousins or brothers i would guess cos they all looked very alike. There was a couple who were from bangalore, she being very afraid of water, then there was a guy from russia travelling with his son and wife, then there was another family, dad mom and son, but much older, the boy was probably just a bit younger than me. So with me sandy and the captain that made 15

I found out all about them all on the journey, as to chat was really the only thing to do to disguise the slight awkwardness of being tied together like sardines.

Taking pics en-route, wherever the boat was taking us to, i spotted a king-fisher over to my left. I zoomed right in but before i could even get my finger on the button he was gone.

The lake was very peaceful, still and calm with only the ripples we had created, making it appear almost glass-like in front of us. The reflection in the water of the mountains and hills which surrounded the lake causing a mirrored-like optical illusion.

As we drifted across the clean lines, creating new scenes with every second we were asail, i noticed up to the left were some huge double fences. Oooh this is gonna be good i thought.. Double fences..

I jokingly said to Sandy is this jurrasic park? It did look and feel a bit like it as we approached. Thirty seconds or so later and over to the right like the entrance to a theme park in big white letters on the fence it said "Lion Safari Park".

I was busy messing about with my setting so wasnt really paying attention for a second when sandy poked me in the side (quite sharply making my body spasm sideways) i looke at him, with a single raised eyebrow, he was smiling and laughing and he pointed to the sign and gestured with his haid. Which was to the right of me.

Words could not really be exchanged due to the loud noise of the boats engine just behind us.

I looked over and pretended to be really surprised. For him. He was happy and a few minutes later we were off the boat and being loaded onto a bus.

The bus was a bit like a prison bus in the american films with bars down the windows and doors and a police meat wagon / riot van style grille accross the front windscreen. This really is like jaursssic park i thought... No expence spared, one of the tagline's of the film as it was repeated several times by the bonkers old fool who in the film as we know extracts the dna from the mosquito trapped in the fossillised nectar, which is on the end of his walking cane.

Just to clarify, When i say bonkers old fool, i dont mean the Great, Late, Sir Richard Attenborough, who was, and always will be legendary in my opinion.. I do mean the character he played.

I mean. Did he really thing he could create a world where man and dinosuar meet?! Ludicrous.. then there was all the problems with the electric fence, and the fat man being eaten whilst takin a dump, it was very il-thought out plan if you ask me, no escape facilites, not to mention, bringing kids into the equasion, i mean come on.. Kids will only ever slow you down in a life or death situation. Throw the kid at the dinosaur hope that satisfies him till at least dinner time, when u throw the other little brat! (She was a brat too) Haha i am of course joking! I love kids really.. I Just couldnt eat a whole one!

The bus pulled away with a jerk as we arrived at the entrance, i noticed on the wing mirror there was a sign saying 'vehicles can appear closer than they are' or whatever the saying is.. Each step was convincing me more and more this was jurassic park.

Even the double gated entrance! I was just glad to have an actual driver, not a robotic droid.. Thing.. Well the cars in jurassic park were on a track.. Anyway enough movie referneces.

The gate opened and we drove in as far as a roller shutter the other end, we entered a time-lock as the man who had opened the gate had locked himself in with us and was now walking round to the roller shutter door..

Oh he's gonna be the first to die i thougt, that's just obvious! The lions having heard the bus setting off will know it means one of two things, visitors or Lunch.. To a lion this is the same thing i think, hence they dont do well at dinner parties!

The shutter door now fully open i waited for the lion to come rushing in and ripping the mans head off. Alas we drove out and the shutter closed. Oh very un-realistic i thought.
He should be dead by now.. Dead.. I was of course joking but my distrubed mind making us both laugh as i told sandy my thoughts after wondered what i was chuckling at.

The track wound around and around driving very slowly when i kept feeling the roar of a t-rex ripping our roof off and eating the bus too for good measure.

There was huge excitement on the bus when a t-rex... [ahem] sorry lion, stood on the left of the track with a second lion, a lion-ess stood a little way ahead of him.

His grizzly main looking a bit tattered and clearly they'd been havin a row over who was takin the cub to "humans". (The feline equivalancy to 'scouts' but for the youngters - dib dib dib)

They were both magnificent beautiful creatures. I heard someone on the bus ask why they had been fighting.

The safari park ranger replying that they do fight from time to time, but we cannot do anything excpet try and distract them, giving them things to hunt (live animals and so on) moreover they are not allowed to intervene as it was a widlife park, not a zoo, therefore they were obliged to leave them to it as if they were in the wild.

And i have to say i do have to commend them on their park. It was safe, for both humans and dinosaurs, the lions despite their row, looked healthy and happy, with a big lot of space, probably as big as earlswood, woods. Or cannock chase as their teritory, with the excpetion of the fences it seemed very natural and not unlike how i would imagine they live in the wild.

There were actully 3 lions in total. I hadnt seen the other one as it was in front but off to the right slightly. As the bus jerked forwards again the lion up ahead moved, begrudgingly so the bus could u turn.

The driver stopped the bus mid-way thru the u-turn segregating the male and female from the other remaining female.

We all took pics like the paparazzi and the lioness who was once in front of the bus had now settled down almost in the same spot, but further back towards the oposide side of the track, which was now, just outside my window.

I stuck me arm out in between the bars on the window as i began lining my shot up, camera strapped onto my wrist as i didnt want to have to go and pick it up.

As i put my other hand out the window to steady the camera so i could take my shot, the lioness leapt up and my arms sticking out like kfc chicken wings, she ripped my arms out of my sockets, camera and all chewed on them for a bit and throwing them back into her mouth like a pelican eating a fish, now im having to type with my eye-balls.

No not really obviously..... Im using my big toe!

Aaanyway after a near miss i decided only to take pics inside the bus and zoom, which worked out much better for all concerned. Especially me! And especially my camera. I was more worried about losing the (868 pics and vids (i now) have taken so far. (Bet u all scroll back up to see how many it was preciously)..

I can always grow new arms! Errrm. Yeh! No, no u cant, you're not a starfish!

Im sorry this is really going slowly and im waffling like a wafflehouse thats got a special on waffles. two for the price of waffle.. So i shall conclude next time.

I am getting a bit behind with my writing as the days are running out and im constantly trying to cram as much into each day as poss... i will catch up when i get chance, There just arent enough hours in the day.

To be continued...
*takes a bow, walks away*

Next: Day 4 - part 2 - Rickshaw Repairs
Previous: Day 3 - Chillout Begins

Diary Photos


Kapa param


C&A poss #1

C&A pose #2


About to pounce Eeeek

She's Lion

Scrappy doo

Scrappy don't!

Mmmm. Lunch (she thinks)

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