8 February 2012

It’s that time of the month. Full moon. The glowing crystal ball may not be as spectacular here in the encroaching bush as it is when seen soaring from an uncluttered horizon in the Karoo or the Kalahari, but it’s rising still marks the peak of my mojorhythm chart. The bush is different when the moon is full. It’s not so devilish and dark at night, so things move about more. There is depth and scale – landscape – not just dark brush an arm’s length away. The bush is more alive. So am I.

I sat watching the moon last night as it rose over my cooking fire. Yellow shards of it at first, cracked by the silhouette of a knoppiesdoring tree, then the pale blue balloon as it sailed aloft. Downriver, about two hundred yards away, a hyena whooped repeatedly. In the trees above me soft chuckles ping-ponged from limb to limb as little lesser bushbabies glided about. There was not a breeze, not another light in sight. Not, under such a heavenly cast, even a care in the world either, other than the lone hippo I could hear wandering about.

This morning I went for a long walk, taking three scouts to where I want them to clear an old track so that access to my camp can hopefully be a little less jarring. Maybe it was the full moon of last night, maybe just my imagination, but as we walked it felt to me as if the bush was even more enchanting than ever.

Rock of ages. Bedrock in the Shingwedzi river, worn smooth by floods.

The typical 'two-wheel' tracks of a hippo.

Wading through tall riparian grass.


The easiest way through the bush is along the elephant paths. These invariably follow the best route and have been cleared and flattened by the big, rubberlike soles of the giants over many years.

Outlying mudholes, where elephant and buffalo like to plaster themselves, are drying up and more animals are coming to the river again.



























Life everywhere: A dew-laden cobweb in an impala track.







4 thoughts on “mooncharm

  1. Als ik dit verhaal lees en, na het zien van de fotos, mijn ogen sluit, reis ik af naar de bush, droom ik even weg en kom helemaal los van de dagelijkse dingen hier op kantoor….

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