We originally planned to head back to Nairobi on Wednesday morning. Sammy, our steward, shook his head knowingly on Tuesday afternoon. "You love it here. You'll stay," he told us. He was right. By Tuesday night we'd decided to stay until Thursday.

But even with the extension, Kyle had already decided he wasn't up for an early morning game drive before an early morning flight, so the Wednesday afternoon drive was our last chance.

And we were not disappointed.

Hello, Gorgeous.

We didn't actually come across a leopard strolling across the plains. We were on high leopard alert, but another jeep spotted her first, laying on a hillock watching a herd of impalas.

The first jeep alerted the others by radio and soon there were six jeeps from our camp semi-circling the leopard and the DLTs. We sat for an hour watching the leopard watch the herd. A small group of zebras passed through, a couple of buffalo walked by. A frisky male impala chased a single not-in-the-mood female again and again while the rest of the herd went about their grass-munching business.

The impalas moved across the plain slowly as the sun set. For a moment it looked as if they'd head into the brush. "That's what she's waiting for," Alice told us in a whisper. "Leopards don't chase, they stalk. She'll follow them into the bush and get one."

But then, out of nowhere, came the leopard's greatest enemy most annoying pest: guineafowl.

The little flock of guineafowl was wandering along when they noticed the leopard. And they let everyone know. I have never heard such a bird cacophony. They circled the hill, they advanced, they retreated, and they made the most ridiculous scene. None of them was interested in actually getting too close to the leopard, but every creature in earshot knew that the guineafowl had identified danger, an enemy in their midst.

The poor leopard just gave up and laid down. She didn't even twitch the tip of her tail, purposefully ignoring the birds and the racket. But after ten minutes of guineafowl-abuse--as the impalas decided against the bush and took to the open plain instead--she finally sat up, stretched, and headed into the bush herself.

The next morning, while Kyle slept and packed, we looked for her again and found, not the Mama leopard, but her baby. The cub was older, but still had some youth and playfulness to his movements. Like lion cubs, leopard cubs stay where they're told. Alice guessed that the mama was hunting and would be coming back at some point with breakfast.

On Wednesday night, after escorting the leopard into the bush, we came back to camp to find a lantern-lit table for two set up outside of our tent. Sammy stood at attention. "What is this?!" we asked.

"It's your last night, right Alli?" He smiled and poured me a glass a of wine. "Yes, today you saw the leopard."