Africa - Day 16 - Nairobi and home

Another long day awaits us and I didn't get much sleep as the temperature seemed to drop a lot in the night so it was quite cold, perhaps we are just being prepared for going back home. Almost half the group are continuing on for another 13 days into the Serengeti and Zanzibar. Although I would love to be staying I am not sad to be leaving, this has been a very unique trip but it will be nice to get back to some home comforts. We arrived back in Nairobi around lunchtime and as we don't get picked up to leave for the airport until 9pm we decided to go to the giraffe centre. Karen came with us although we found out her name isn't actually Karen! Her name is Kirryn, we thought the other Aussies in the group just had a bit of an accent when they pronounced it. We joked with her about how she hadn't bothered to correct us in over two weeks. At the giraffe centre we got to hand feed one of the giraffes, it was nice to end the trip with a final visit to some animals especially as we only got a glance in the distance at a couple of giraffe at the first campsite. We spent the rest of the evening enjoying some final conversation with Kirryn and Julie before leaving for the airport. This time we were there with hours to spare which suited us perfectly. What was heartbreaking however was having to look longingly at the ridiculously cheap bottles of alcohol that we weren't allowed to buy because we take a connecting flight and the 100ml for liquids applies when we get back on the final flight.
So as I wait to board the flight I am wondering if I thought I would have ever enjoyed such a holiday if someone had described it to me. Many hours driving on a truck where some of the roads are just bumpy dirt tracks, becoming a pro at using the bush toilets, cold showers, putting the tent up and down, early mornings, sunburn, mosquito bites, safari ants and constantly being dusty. Hopefully its obvious from the previous entries that it was all worth it. I don't think I have ever met such genuinely friendly people who are so welcoming and happy. The children were adorable as they ran to wave at you with their grinning faces. The interaction with the chimps and gorillas is something I will never forget. The genocide memorial was moving and so worthwhile visiting along with meeting the kids at the orphanage. The boat ride at Queen Elizabeth park watching the elephant and hippos and waking up with a buffalo meters from the tent were surreal. The golden monkeys were an unexpected highlight and I never expected to stay at such picturesque campsites even if the facilities were sometimes limited. Its been a great  adventure and now I have the enjoyment of scouring through thousands of photos and planning our 2013 trip :-)