After 3 flights and more than 30 hours of travel, it’s fair to wonder, “Were we really there?”
But we really were. And we have the pictures to prove it.
The Mala Mala game reserve in South Africa.
My wife and I were privileged to be among a group of 24 people invited by NBC Connecticut President and General Manager Ric Harris to travel to South Africa (via London) to visit Cape Town and go on safari at Mala Mala.
We split into four groups, each with their own guide, and went off into the bush at 5:30 in the morning and 4pm for three-hour excursions. Our guide was Bens.
Bens and his wife, who also works at Mala Mala, have 2 children. They work for 6 weeks straight, then go home for two weeks.
And no, the rifle was never used. But it was loaded, because you never know. Bens has the scars to prove it. And he also had the expertise to get us five feet away from this.
We asked Bens how safe it was to get so close. He pointed to a carcass hanging in a nearby tree, and told us the leopard had just consumed another inhabitant of the bush, and was in the process of digesting its meal. It wouldn’t be going anywhere for a while. Bens found the leopard because he sees things we don’t see. He senses what we can’t. He is highly trained, and highly skilled.
He knows the order of nature. For instance, that bird on the giraffe’s face? It’s doing the big guy a favor by picking off parasites.
To be continued.