They are home again. The wildebeest without whom this great place would have no place in history… that migration that made Simba scramble up the cliff for safety because he was still so little in that all time great animation ‘Lion King’. They are home and sound like a million people in a stadium watching an exciting game. They are so loud that I can hear them even with the windows closed, all the way from the bottom of the hill a few kilometers away.
‘I will finally see the migration on my way to church today.” I thought as I prepared to leave the house on Sunday and pass by the mess for a quick breakfast. I walked up to a waiter to ask for the quickest item on the menu as I greeted my colleagues at table. The large dark form less than 10 meters away on the other side of the open air mess pillars caught my eye. I turned fully to see that an elephant was calmly having its staple breakfast of tall elephant grass as my colleagues also very calmly had their continental breakfast. I turned to look at them and they smiled and said: “Yes… those are elephants”. I turned back to the elephant and realized there were others a little farther on.
The waiter asked me what he could do for me and I quickly made my order as I took out my camera and began to record the event.. 🙂 … I rarely go anywhere without my camera these days.
They were walking towards my house in my little corner of the garden and I figured they would not be there by the time I returned from church. So I took it all in thanking God for the opportunity to experience the wild so close, and for the peaceful relationship we as human beings have developed with these great beasts of God’s creation.
As the church choir, uniquely dressed in traditional regalia, completed their last song, I thought about the many things I had to do to complete my Sunday – watching a movie, having dinner with friends, and all things nice for a great Sunday like this.
It was only when I got closer to my house that I began to wonder whether I would in fact do all the things I had planned. The wildebeest had come to the house and were scattered about to my left and to my right. There were a couple of elephants before the house too… the elephants had not moved that fast after all…
One elephant walked towards my now famous verandah where they usually reach out for the boughs of the tree and prune it quite nicely. I inched towards my driveway and then gently parked at the parking area away from the elephant, hoping that it would move on away from the house quickly.
I switched off the engine and debated exiting the vehicle… I could no longer see the elephant since my position prevented me from seeing it… Will the elephant have kept moving? Will it still be there? I pondered about this hoping that in the process I was giving it time to move. I eventually decided that it would probably have moved on and stepped out of the vehicle. I walked to the back side of the house towards my verandah… and came face to face with the behind of the elephant some 3-5 meters away. I froze.
Copyright © 2011, Ophelia Swai. All Rights Reserved.