Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Baby Elephant Bully

August 30th, 4-8 pm

A bit of humor falls upon us today.

A family of elephants drink from a tall water tank while a herd of buffalo stand to the side, waiting for a drink of an attached water hole. A baby elephant (too short to reach the tank) charges the buffalo. Stomping. Lifting his trunk high! The Zeus-like buffalo just stare at him. He stomps again as if to say, "get away from my water!" Then he runs back to his mama, slinking in and between her legs for protection. Not so tough!

Then he charges again. Stomps. Trumpets a tiny trumpet.

And the buffalo stare again wild amazement of this little elephant bully with attitude. What patience they seem to have for him.

The mini-bully runs back to mama again. Victorious.

The buffalo stay clear of his water.

And he wallows in the red mud, sloshing and rolling on his back with joy!

Giraffes eat from acacia and commiphora tree tops. Ears rotating one at a time. Their tall graceful bodies highlighted in the setting sun. Darker silhouettes against the sacred Mnt. Kisigau.

A perfect outline of the Tsavo sky.

I hang over the side of the truck--wind on my face--scanning the spot light for eye shine. Surrounded by my team. All focused on finding our simbas again. Believing in the dream that is Africa.

That night we eat dinner around the campfire for African night. Ugali--a cornmeal based starch--tasty with curry flavored vegetables. Arrow root, nduma in Swahili, --sweet potato-like tubers. More veggies. Tomato and red onion salad and Tuskers to quench our thirst. Pumpkin cake for dessert. Ah. Good food. Good friends. Laughter until it hurts. A campfire. A Tsavo night.

The perfect fit.

(Thank you Nicola for the first 4 photos of the elephants!)

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