Today we took Mom and Dad on an African Safari. We did the usual thing... we drove, we looked at animals, we jarred across bumpy roads, we watched in wonder at God's creation, (being rainy season) we navigated some difficult mud-holes and major puddles. One thing we didn't expect though, came about mid-morning. We had ventured down a path less-traveled, and as noted above, we'd conquered some rather slippery terrain. After traversing nearly 30km and expecting to come to a turn to cross the river, we instead found an overflowed river surrounded in 5-ft tall grass and mud. Not going that way.
So we turned around and went back the way we came. However, coming around a bend and descending in elevation we saw 5 college-age girls jumping and waving their arms as if they'd been stranded on an island or lost at sea. We were not a rescue plane or boat, and we were driving down (crazy, I know) a road. So this was intriguing to say the least. I stopped the car and hopped out, only to be greeted with shouts of "We're Saved!" As I walked further down the path, I could see that all of the girls had pants rolled up to their knees, and they were standing by a Land Cruiser that was stuck in the mud with water up over the tires. In the middle of the puddle, water and mud up to his knees, was an old Swedish man... not wearing pants.
Their car was hopelessly stuck, and not being able to push them backwards, we decided I'd have to pull them out, and then we'd both have to turn around and careen back across and through the now deepened muddy puddle (or maybe pond, lake). And so we pulled their car out. Then to the audience and cheers of the girls and pantless man, two American residents of Tanzania with grandparents and 6-week old baby in tow splashed through the 2-feet deep muddy water and climbed out the other side to safety.
When all was said and done, they told me that they thought the puddle was impassable, but tried it only because they saw my tire tracks going through :). Never a dull moment on this continent!