Don’ts of Camp Life


Elleni Stephanou, Local Intern

Date Published
  1. Don’t leave milk in a bottle, unrefrigerated, overnight.

It may say ‘Long Life’ on the carton, but that becomes ‘Short Life’ once it has been opened. You will discover your inner-farmer once you wake up and find a form of yoghurt in place of your milk.

  1. If you happen to do number 1 anyway, don’t eat the yoghurt that formed.

Yes, it’s exciting. You’ve discovered a new talent! But no, your stomach will not appreciate it, nor let you hear the end of it!

my first yoghurt mistake

  1. Don’t leave bottled berry juice (possibly fruit juice) of any kind in the sun for a day.

This will proceed to ferment; a process that tends to be monitored for your safety and well-being by certified companies, but that which cannot be monitored by you in camp. The resultant alcohol is unpleasant to say the least.

  1. If you happen to do number 3 anyway, don’t drink the slightly alcoholic result.

A sip to taste should put you off. No one wants a camp hang-over.

  1. If you are doing your own washing don’t ever think ‘I’ll do it tomorrow’, and then not do it.

As the saying goes; ‘Tomorrow never comes’. That is at least until you have nothing to wear, and well… that’s never fun!

  1. Don’t ever think ‘Well, I’m not really hungry,’ and only have a cup of tea for breakfast.

I will bet that will be the day you get a puncture, or find a group of over 100 elephants all which need to be identified and monitored, or have to winch out a stuck tourist car, or take a nap and miss lunch… Yeah, you get the idea!

  1. Don’t forget to set an alarm when taking a siesta.

It must be the combination of the Samburu sun and a full tummy following lunch that makes you sleep deeper than ever before and wake up with the last hour of daylight left. Set an alarm so you don’t waste your afternoon, and have extra work the next day!

  1. Don’t ignore that little voice in your head.

Even if this voice is telling you at 2:30 AM to pack all your bags for fear of a flood; do it. You may find its result is a lot more than mere peace of mind. (Although, this does not translate to; allow yourself to be a nervous wreck!)

  1. Don’t wear your head torch whilst brushing your teeth outside.

You will find it rather difficult to close your mouth before the moths and beetles attack, and spitting them out is always unpleasant.

  1. Don’t leave your tent open unless you are inside it, wide awake and alert.

I have had visitations by vervet monkeys, scorpions, wasps and pygmy mongooses. I will not risk any further visitations considering the 5ft long spitting cobra that was found in camp recently!

These are a few opinions that I have developed based largely on my personal experience over the past few weeks. If you wish to attempt any of my 10 then by all means, go ahead! But please document it; I’d love to read your resultant blog.