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A Reunion in the Wild

Five years after their first visit, a special group reunites at Angama Mara to pay tribute to the late safari photographer Klaus Tiedge
Above: Maasai warrior, Fred, captured beautifully by Klaus in 2018

Visiting Angama Mara this time came with a mix of emotions. It wasn't just a typical safari holiday for us, our purpose was to reunite and honour Klaus Tiedge, my husband, my children's father, and Dean's friend. In 2018, we first experienced Angama while filming 'Safari of My Life'. Sadly, Klaus passed away in mid-2019 after battling cancer.

The Tiedge family at Angama, 2018

Angama is a truly magical place. It's not only the stunning location and panoramic views that brought us a sense of calm and peace, but more importantly, it's the genuine kindness of the people. During our first trip, from the moment we stepped into the safari vehicle at the airstrip, we felt a warm welcome. The Angama staff made us feel instantly at home, like part of a caring and loving family. This connection remained unchanged during our recent visit and solidified our bond with the place and its people.

For me, I realised that the connections we build with people are what truly lasts. The way Angama and its people made us feel mattered more than any wildlife encounter. It's an experience that has stayed with each one of us.

Although we did have some incredible animal sightings this time, the rainy season posed its challenges, reminiscent of our visit five years ago. During our stay, we had several game drives that tested our patience. Firstly, with our private driver guide and friend John Masek, and then with an Angama guide. Both of them went above and beyond to accommodate us and had a keen sense of where we might have the best chance of spotting animals.

Among other incredible encounters were getting up close to a pride of lions under a tree and witnessing elephants enjoying a mud bath on a rainy afternoon. But even when we weren't fortunate enough to have a remarkable sighting, simply being out there, driving through the open plains and witnessing the marvels of nature, such as thunderstorms brewing or beautiful sunsets, brought us a sense of tranquillity. It allowed us to momentarily forget our worries and responsibilities and fully embrace the present moment.

We couldn't miss the opportunity to go on a walking safari again, which offers a completely different way to experience the bush. Accompanied by a knowledgeable Maasai Naturalist, we learned about various plants, their medicinal and herbal uses and the traditions of their culture. We spent around two hours exploring the camp's perimeter, getting close to zebras and giraffes on foot. This allowed us to appreciate the Mara's smaller inhabitants, such as birds, ants, bugs and even more.

This time, I fulfilled a long-standing wish to go on a balloon safari. It was an unforgettable experience from start to finish. Watching the balloons being filled and taking off, gliding over the Mara plains as the sun rose, and ending with an exceptional champagne breakfast in an open field. It's challenging to put it all into words — it's easier to show you.

We would like to express our heartfelt gratitude to Angama for organising a tree-planting in honour of Klaus. The tree now stands in their Garden of Remembrance, adjacent to the Shamba garden and the chapel. In 2019, Nicky Fitzgerald, the founder and former CEO of Angama, planted a seedling when Klaus passed away, which has already beautifully grown into a medium-sized tree.

This gesture was incredibly special to us then and continues to hold deep meaning. We are immensely grateful to have Klaus' memory forever be a part of the Mara and Angama's Shamba, in this cherished place that Klaus held dear.

We certainly hope to return one day and witness the growth of 'Klaus' Tree', hopefully, undisturbed by elephants and grown majestic. It would be a joy to experience the tranquillity and unique energy of Angama and the Mara Triangle once again.

Sandra, the author, with her children

Filed under: Stories from Angama

Tagged with:

Angama Mara , Maasai Mara , Mara Triangle

About: Guest Author

Members of the broader Angama family — be it guests, agents, suppliers, friends — contribute to the blog from time to time. We love to share their stories, too.

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