acacia blossoms

acacia blossoms

Monday, April 25, 2011

It just is

waterlilies at sunrise

The last few days have been grey, overcast with soft drizzle and rain - and its been cold.  This is unusual weather for here and we have had logs burning in the fireplace non stop to chase away the winter chill. Thank goodness for the fireplace.  The weather somehow has matched my mood - or my mood had come into line with the weather.  Perhaps it was the global consciousness of so many riotous and tragic occurrences spread about our beautiful world.  Or perhaps it was because of those mighty planets whirling about unseen over our heads pulling on our tides and exerting their influences on our microscopic lives. Or maybe its something else altogether.

 Definitely it had to do, in part, with the rhino poaching war reaching our doorstep. Its is heartbreaking to see one of these massive yet vulnerable and shy creatures that has been caught in a snare on its back foot for days. The bush all around the anchor tree has been flattened in attempts to escape. Finally falling into a donga (ditch) headfirst to die slowly of thirst and fear - all for the sake of two tiny growths on its young head.

  Rhinos are dropping like flies these days. They are so easy to catch and find and kill. But it's not only rhinos - suddenly the whole war on wildlife for human greed just became too big for my brain. I am better now but sometimes it just gets too much.   Getting sad doesn't help however - we have to keep thinking.

So anyway, We have been experiencing late rains here - which is really a happy event as it fills the waterholes just before the dry season.  There have been huge rains in the Angolan highlands apparently and the Okavango River in Botswana is in flood already. We went to have a look and to try and reach the island where our boat lives. We were hoping to hire a river taxi from Sepupa to get there, but the jump off point was unreachable.  The river itself was a huge swirling eddying surge of water pushing into riverine forests and ancient water courses.  It was so huge and mighty it looked as if it had a meniscus like a glass of water filled to ultimate capacity - a sort of bulge barely contained within its floodplain and papyrus bed banks.

Botswana is filling up with water again these days. After a few excellent rainy seasons the floodwaters of the inland delta have been reaching into forgotten corners bringing them back to  life. Massive flocks of birds follow the headwaters, and fields of water lilies adorn newly drenched flood plains. It makes our primate hearts happy and calm to see sparkling water coasting by.

Today the sun came out. The monkeys are here again visiting, eating the corn we put out for the birds, playing around the windows and thundering on the tin roof again.

It's continuity. It's 'this too shall pass'.  It just is.



white rhino group

18 comments:

Bonnie said...

Always a pleasure to read about your exotic life Val. I know for you, 'it just is', but for me it is a beautifully described glimpse into lands I will probably never see. Heart-wrenching to read of the trapped rhino. Hope you are well.

Janet said...

Oh f&ck Val!!! I suppose it was just a matter of time before they started in your paradise.

Yesterday I saw a senselessly stoned puff adder on the road - in the middle of nowhere. Why they couldn't simply have let the thing go back into the veld - I have not idea!!!

Been an amazing amount of water in southern Africa this summer. Namibia still flooded in places

Bizarre

Fire Byrd said...

Where you have water we have heat. Our April has been over 24 degrees during the last week.
Terrible news about the Rhino, like the terrible destruction of the Tiger population.

e said...

There appears no end to the destruction humans do in the name of greed...Poaching and killing are horrible.

We are at 90 degrees and expecting some late afternoon rain here. Summer has arrived. I hope you are well.

Lori ann said...

I'm sorry you weren't able to get to your boat, but i guess it's good the water levels are so high.

and poachers...that poor rhino... i hate poachers.

The Solitary Walker said...

Thanks for your great post. It's so fascinating to hear about your part of the world, Val - though your rhino story fills me with anger and despair. Poaching of rhino and elephant - not to mention lion, leopard and cheetah - seems to be rife in Africa at the moment, as gangs get more organised and better equipped.

Janelle said...

yeah shit val....the poaching is out of control...so so sad...when will it just STOP man? same here for rhino and ellies...getting slaughtered...hate it...tend to put my fingers in my ears, close my eyes and make a loud mad person sound to block it all out...sending love xxx j

Angela said...

I get so hot angry at poachers - I don`t know if I could control myself if I had a gun. And what are they killing for? For a bit of horn? For their own pleasure? Feeling mighty? Mankind has so much over-estimation in them, so little empathy ... I wonder when the time will come that a superior species will arise and eliminate us.
I can see why you feel gloomy, Val. Sometimes I do too. And then I think, what we can do is only what you are doing. Feeding the birds, watching the monkeys, enjoying the cold and the heat as it comes. Trying to do the best we can. Hugs to you, Val my friend!

Val said...

hi Bonnie - that rhino was a sorry sight for sure :(
all well thanks, and i hope so with you too?

Janet - the rains are great this year. Fantastic to see all that water flowing into theDelta. Sorry about the puffy . Whenever i have been about to step on one, they have always given a loud hiss to let me know they were there. I hope they keep that up!

Fire byrd - i hope you are enjoying the early summer weather, with some magical countryside times?

e - ah summers there, and winters creeping in here. Today is perfect, still, crisp and drenched in sunlight.

Lori - it was fantastic to see the river in full flood. What a mighty beast - like nyami nyami :) bringing life to the Delta and beyond. We will try again when the floods go down a bit - unless we can get a boat to take us to the island..

Solitary Walker - thanks. Yes the global appetite for wild creatures is rampant and seemingly unquenchable. its too awful for words

Janelle - I shall try that mad person scream and perhaps it will chase the poachers far away x

Geli - sometimes it just gets you down, but that doesnt help anyone eh, so we must keep thinking and trying. Its not only humans that should have rights to live in their own way.

thanks for your lovely comments everyone - i LOVE the blogosphere xxV

Val said...

hi Bonnie - that rhino was a sorry sight for sure :(
all well thanks, and i hope so with you too?

Janet - the rains are great this year. Fantastic to see all that water flowing into theDelta. Sorry about the puffy . Whenever i have been about to step on one, they have always given a loud hiss to let me know they were there. I hope they keep that up!

Fire byrd - i hope you are enjoying the early summer weather, with some magical countryside times?

e - ah summers there, and winters creeping in here. Today is perfect, still, crisp and drenched in sunlight.

Lori - it was fantastic to see the river in full flood. What a mighty beast - like nyami nyami :) bringing life to the Delta and beyond. We will try again when the floods go down a bit - unless we can get a boat to take us to the island..

Solitary Walker - thanks. Yes the global appetite for wild creatures is rampant and seemingly unquenchable. its too awful for words

Janelle - I shall try that mad person scream and perhaps it will chase the poachers far away x

Geli - sometimes it just gets you down, but that doesnt help anyone eh, so we must keep thinking and trying. Its not only humans that should have rights to live in their own way.

thanks for your lovely comments everyone - i LOVE the blogosphere xxV

Lauri said...

Yes Val sometimes all of the sad news about human beings behaving badly does become overwhelming and like you, when the sun is gone for too long such sadness becomes worse. We've been a bit lucky in Mahalapye, it's been raining in the morning but then the sun comes out, though it is colder than normal. I hope this doesn't speak to a frigid winter. Not my cup of tea at all!

Friko said...

It's always the same, the greed of humans destroying the world they live in. I hate it. It's sheer stupidity.

Try to stay calm and carry on with the work you're doing. We can't give up hope that we'll learn eventually.

I love your tales from an alien world.

Amanda said...

that's so awful about that poor rhino -- ugggghhhh -- it's so horrible to read about poaching. you're right that getting sad doesn't help, but to keep thinking how to effect change.

so much water! i'm still trying to imagine the river swelling up like a meniscus in a huge glass -- such beautiful imagery, val.

xx

Amanda said...

that's so awful about that poor rhino -- ugggghhhh -- it's so horrible to read about poaching. you're right that getting sad doesn't help, but to keep thinking how to effect change.

so much water! i'm still trying to imagine the river swelling up like a meniscus in a huge glass -- such beautiful imagery, val.

xx

Charl said...

If only we could change the billion plus Chinese's ancient medicine beliefs. Sadly the amounts of money behind this is so huge that it is vital for us to go after every link in the chain.
Mankind sure have perfected the ability to destroy. I take my hat off to everyone working to protect and preserve our precious earth.

Marilynne said...

I'm loving your post and I'm sorry about the poaching. It hurts my heart too to hear it. I don't know what you can do about it - if the police can't, who can?

Loved your post anyway. We have had a three or four year drought and I know what you mean about the land coming back to life with the rain. I'm seeing plants I never saw before.

Miranda said...

Remember in the valley when there were LAODS of them? And then SUDDENLY we were seeing them dead EVERYWHERE. Just for a few short years. And then they were gone. xxx

Val said...

Lauri - have to work on those boundaries i guess. cold but sunny now - beautiful :))

Friko - thanks for your words of wisdom - we have to work this one out. there is no choice

Amanda - it is spectacular to see that river in seasonal flood. makes our little primate hearts happy to see water coming back into the desert!

Charl - me too - hats off!

Marilynne - how wonderful

Miranda - i remember that so well and when they are gone they are just gone. no use crying then eh?

xxxV