Emotional encounters

Average maximum temperature: 24,1 °C
Average minimum temperature: 7,4 °C
Sunrise: 06:34
Sunset:  17:22

Olifantsrus, Ethosa
In the dark of the night I saw him slowly moving towards me. Instead of moving around the tight bushes, he passed right through the scarce undergrowth. The branches scraped his grey skin, which made a scraping sound. He continued along the waterside seemingly unbothered, with a clear goal in mind. At five meters from the observation hide the elephant came to a stop at the waterhole, under the window where I was sitting. In the red light I saw how he used his trunk to carefully search for water. A loud slurping sound grew from below me, after which he moved his trunk to his mouth to empty it: it sounded as if someone emptied a bucket of water. Every time he repeated this ritual, I amazed myself about the peculiarity of his trunk. I was so close I could see every muscle in his trunk contract. Big wrinkles showed, especially when his trunk was at his lips. Breathless I watched the impressive show. How did I deserve this, crossed my mind while the emotions got to me, that I get to experience all of this?

Continue reading

Hold on to me

We sat there holding hands. Or better said, she was holding my hand with her foot. Her hands were occupied clasping my leg, by which it was pressed against her cage. Preciosa is a spider monkey, and she’s depressed. And that makes sense, if you’ve been kept in a too small cage for years, in an establishment that was open each night until 3 am. Drunk men would lure her with food, to break the bones in her stretched arms and fingers with their intoxicated power. Now she tries to grab a piece of banana with her deformed, grown together fingers.

Holding 'hands' Continue reading