When we made the reservations for the lodge we went for two different type of sleeping arrangements - the tree-house and the tent. The tree-house having room for two and the tent room for three. We figured it would be fun to trade off sleeping quarters for the four nights we had reserved.
The lodge is located in the region where the Sine and Saloum rivers meet up with the Atlantic Ocean creating vast water ways for the abundant mangrove forests, home to many migratory birds, a patchwork of scrubby brush, baobabs and palm trees and salt ponds.
While the lodge website provides you with all the practical information, there is one specific detail they clearly chose to leave off. And that would have to do with this....
Meet 'The Varan' - yes a monitor lizard that lives underneath the tent in a large hole and of course comes out from time to time. The tent is on a slightly elevated platform leaving just enough spaced between the platform and the ground for a lizard to call his home. Thankfully he came out in time for the boys to discover his existence.
Addison pointed out to me that in fact there were 2 of these lovely creatures -the big one which is the one above and a smaller one he and Parker would see roaming the grounds. Clearly this one is in need of some good skin lotion.
As it turns out on an evening that Manning and I slept in the tent this guy decides it's time to leave his spot which was a hole in the ground below before the crack of dawn and I think his tail hit one of the support beams and I immediately woke up thinking tiny earthquake in Senegal - then realizing it's 'our friend' below. Then there was some loud sounds between the verant and 'something else' - some further hissing and all was over. Then of course he decides to just settle in below above his hole but still underneath the floor boards. At that point I could hear him breathing (or was it like some kind of heavy snoring). It took a while for me to let his rhythmic aspirations lull me back to sleep. I was just glad we knew from the get go as well that he would not be able to climb up onto the tent platform that way it was designed.