Yesterday evening Clive and I planned a walk, to dust the cobwebs gleaned from a day of internet interaction. Descending the steep driveway to the base of our hill, atop which perches our Tsaven house, with hand-carved walking sticks as weapons and preceeded by two bouncing Jack Russells, we turned clockwise to perambulate around our hill. We did not get very far. A deep growling greeted us from the long grass, encouraging us to turn tail all and retreat. No sight of cat did we get, but we heard cat and felt cat. Anti-clockwise we went, and on approaching our waterhole we discovered the reason for cat presence-twenty buffalo, waiting to drink, stood watching us and then huffed away between the mopani trees.
Discretion then being the better part of valour, we climbed back up our hill, set up chairs to watch the sky opposite the sunset streak with pink and watched the buffalo herd, now below us. Keeping her from rejoining the herd, a bull nuzzled and mounted a cow, intent on matters other than lions in the grass. A hyena yodelled. Scops owls and a White-faced owl called, intermingled by Freckled and Fiery-necked nightjars.
Crack! With the sudden arrival out of previously silent, darkening bush that never fails to amaze me, the elephants came in. Fast and thirsty, they ringed the waterhole but sniffed and inhaled in disgust, water not very clean…..
They drank rapidly, fussily, and melted away into the night.
All night long we drowsed to the intermittant mumblings of lion, and gentle whoops of hyena.
As far as we know, the buffalo all lived to see another dawn.