2018 greats and HUGE THANKS ALWAYS!!

the rising sun.. red from the Kaisut desert dust

2018 a year with wonderful sun rises, moon and moon eclipses, an amazing line of planets Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and Mars all in the sky at once in a perfect line, and always the exquisite stars!!!

Stars in the sky and OUR supporters!! THANK YOU ALL!!

a full eclipse of the moon in June 18.. a blood moon.. 

 

That same eclipse of the moon in June.. the earth moving away.

just another beautiful sight of the moon!.. not the eclipse but an extraordinary picture showing the whole moon!

This year started so badly with an awfal drought and a huge loss of livestock, huge worries for every one and then the rain comes..

If was soooooo hot and the sun was merciless.. the beginning of the year was harsh windy and endless sun from morning to evening!

Then the animals from the desert arrived in there hundreds and thousands.. although of course they are welcome they do disrupt an already rather fragile ecosystem..

thousands of camels come from the desert disturbing the elephants which causes them to be ‘cross’!

the owners of the camels tried to kill one of the lions, that had tried to eat their camel but the local people told them to leave!

AND suddenly its all forgotten !!

a hopeful sight!!

the rain finally came

then the floods !!

One thing that is wonderful about living with these pastoral peoples is they never look back.. just forwards .. funny apparently our ‘Douglas’ motto is ‘Jamais arrierre” .. So there you are! … I should have been born a Samburu! So we started with death and sadness and we are finishing with big smiles, as actually we thought the end of the year rains were going to fail, but a lovely December present arrived almost 6 weeks late and the area has been graced with lovely grass growing rain!!  HOOOOOORAY!! and thank you nature for always saving the day!

Grevys in the desert??  desert??? Yes..

Milgis has achieved so much as well this year..  Nothing would be possible with out YOU ALL.. A HUGE AND VERY VERY GRATFUL THANKS TO EVERY ONE THAT CAME ON SAFARI AND SUPPORTS THE MILGIS, large or small.. Even words!!  thanks for every ones comments.. love to hear from you but don’t know how to reply!!

A little update on whats going on!!

lion’s on the increase!

scouts work day and night protecting this most beautiful place , the wildlife and the forests

elephants relaxing more and more.. here, coming out in front of our camp before its dark

our new scout in the north end of Lenkiyou (the matthews) his name is Ndunene.. (The old mans beard that grows on trees!) the mountains behind are the Ndotos!.. we felt that the colobus were very nervous on a recent trip and fear they may be being used for target practise?? 

We are now influencing the people with our gentle conservation messages in around (of course no borders!,)  7000 square kms..  Our most important message of course is LOOK AFTER WHAT YOU’VE GOT!! The land is not getting any bigger and its already at  ‘ SATURATION ‘ point and so you need to keep a check on the human and livestock population.. Our’ Ramate e losho’ ( looking after society) film is really making a difference and people are now THINKING! (see my blog Oct 10th 18..re the film)

We launched the film at a scouts meeting in Ngurnit… it was very well accepted!

can you see our sweet visitor on the rock behind to the left of the tree, at the meeting!

Of course we can live together .. We used to before!

This year particularly.. we have really noticed the Elephants settling down, and coming out at all times day and night!

this bull came down to drink midday without even batting an eye lid!

life just goes on.. these warriors had been bathing just a 100 meters down stream

People and Eleys are just getting on with life shareing the same place!!

meeting elephants on safari is the norm now

camels walking past a troop of baboons drinking every one relaxed

baboons just getting on with life!

This year we drilled 3 new boreholes.. Kileswa.. very successful … Kasipo.. no water , and Seren we are still finding out..  It has been incredibly challenging trying to find water here!

the search for water in Seren

What does the computer say.. theres water or no water!

the community showing interrest in the water drilling

Kasipo.. drilling to nowhere.. so sad and expensive!

Lazaro continues to maintain our 14 water projects..

pump broken down at latakwen

Lazaros bike all packed up ready to head off to work!

Lazaro hard at work

lazaro getting a little help from the locals in latakwen!

 

fixing the pipes near Mpagas

This year we have  managed to see 26 children through secondary school and 15 to uni and colleges.. some are finishing this year other will continue.. Those that finish hopefully will get jobs in our area and can keep the Milgis message going!!

We are still supporting the teachers in 6 little nursary/primary schools,  some under a tree on the move, and some in  eco friendly schools.. Suruan and Noonchura are thriving..

Noonchura.. 

We have encouraged the gov’t schools to get involved  in conservation.. Titus spent 6 months traveling all around all the schools talking to the students, about animals and their benefits.. plus what the ‘Milgis’ does and WHY!? The children love these lessons!!  At the end, 5 schools were chosen, to attend a debate in Latakwen, where each school gave a show in front of a panel.. it was impossible to choose a winner, as they all were wonderful, so in the end 12 people from each of the five schools were taken on a educational trip to lake Turkana.. THEY LOVED IT!!

 

Held in latakwen school.. The competition involved 5 of the most enthusiastic schools..the show was wonderful.. great laughter and fun..  this one went the traditional route

 

The Samburu generally do not swim as they never see water this big but heres the children enjoying a swim in lake Turkana.. Not going too deep i see!

Visiting the museum in Loiangalani

Taking them out on to the lake! they are terrified of boats!

We have come across many people ‘ who you cant talk conservation to’ until one deals with their horrible problems!

This young lad had bad luck.. a cow fell on him in a well and his hip came out of joint.. 6 months later we found help through MEAK! He spent i month in this caste.. but he is finally on his way home as we speak. Thanks to Christoph and his team from England this guy will be fine again!

MEAK have kindly replaced one of our pickups this year!! so we have a very smart new car to carry our patients.. We will be doing a joint eye mission with MEAK in Nachola (hopefully) next year in August.. We feel this will be a great way to help bring peace between the tribes!..

Betty we still have not found help for this little guy.. But we keep trying!

this lady has been asking me for help to chop this growth out .. I was scared but her son insisted we helped and i think we will see her next time guarding the goats with out 10 extra pounds around her waste! ( so you see the growth bulging out)

learning to walk again after several years immobile.. so simple if there was a way!.. Thanks Christoph and team.. 

AND WE COME TO THE END OF 2018.. with plenty of enthusiasm and hope!

WHAT IS THIS CRYSTAL BALL GOING TO GIVE US NEXT YEAR!???

Seeing the success of the RAMATE e LOSHO film we are hell bent on getting the funding to do a new film on why they need to stop the burning in the mountains and luggas!.. We need funding!!

Its time this crazy game stops.. 

Although i have to say things have been the best ever this year!! was it because people died in April from floods??

the fire roars on overnight..

 

The result!… death from fires..

 

horrors of forest fires.. this huge tree ?? So sad.. 

again I show this picture.. East side of the Ndotos.. damage from major flooding caused by burning the mountain.. Hundreds maybe thousands of animals lost their lives and people also.. This mountain has been so badly burnt it now will not cope with big deluges of rain..

2019…..  We head for the Suguta valley and south end of Turkana.. We are involved in a very exciting venture starting in the Suguta valley at the famous volcano Silali, and we intend to walk up the Suguta up to the south end of Turkana, and then over the three mountains Nyiru, Ndotos and Lenkiyou!!.. a proper explore, and filming and documenting of some of the most beautiful amazing country in the world!! We are going with Ken karas, the intrepid naturalist ..

This next year takes us to new country through paradise and beyond!

WITH..

THE INTREPID NATURALIST!

 

The great Volcano Silali in the Suguta Valley

In side the crater!

this extraordinary swamp north of Silali, which drains into the Suguta

can’t wait to swim in the Suguta river.. but theres crocs like no bodies business .. I think I’ll swim in the rapids on this water fall..

incredible patterns

the lava flows are JUST INCREDIBLE

Logipi… The lake at the North end.. 

Lake Turkana the south end beckoning us in 2019!

Then from the desert and hot country over Mt nyiru, ndotos, and Lenkiyou

The west side of Mt Nyiru!

In the mean time the camels will follow us as support as we take porters over the mountains!

 

This is where we will be for christmas.. ON SAFARI!! 

THis is so christmasy!!! I love this picture.. look at these two camels, their wonderful faces make me laugh..  they are best friends and always sleep next to each other!… 

SO ALL.. heres to a wonderful Christmas .. We will be out there enjoying all our hard work with the ‘Milgis’!!  With Samburu song and camel bells for sounds!!

AND Heres to a beautiful and fun new year!

And well catch up in 2019!…………

a huge terrapin on the Milgis Lugga!..

my closest neibour .. a dikdik

 

 

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One thought on “2018 greats and HUGE THANKS ALWAYS!!

  1. Ah Helen, what a fantastic post. Thank you for the amazing photos – so evocative. What an incredible life you lead and what a change you have instigated in the area. I will look at these pics many times. How exciting about the ellies being so chilled. If I had the money I would be back like a shot! Have a wonderful Christmas – what wouldn’t I give to be away from the madness here!!! I shall be in France with my grandchildren, who live right by Lake Geneva. Much love and all the best from the Uk. Jane

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