Twilight in the Kruger National Park
by Ruwaydah Jakoet
(Cape Town, South Africa)
It happened many, many years ago but in my mind it's like it happened last weekend. I was about 8 years old, about 33 years ago, when my father took us on an adventure never to be forgotten to the Kruger National Park.
The warm summers evenings and dry air with many mosquitoes biting wherever they could find a spot of flesh.
This was my first intro to the wild. I remember the hot sand but most of all I remember one of our sunset safari drives into the wild. We spotted group of lions lazing around.
It was beautiful, the colours of dusk over the horizon with the tall trees and dry grass. We were sitting in our jeep when suddenly those lame lions woke up into the twilight zone. All we noticed was the way they knew what to do almost as if they had been schooled for what happened next.
In some nearby bushes the ranger alerted us to some wildebeest wondering around. The lions had spotted their dinner and were planning the kill.
I wanted to scream out to the wildebeest to run but I remember my mom holding her arm around my shoulder telling me this is part of the food chain which I at 8 yrs old could not fully comprehend.
It wasn't long before all natures beauty turned into turmoil! Everywhere was dust and action. The lions chased after the poor wildebeest and not long after one of the lions jumped towards the wildebeests throat and held on while the others got hold of his hindquarters and dragged him to the ground.
How can such a small animal get a larger animal to the ground I wondered? I was horrified! It was horrible and afterwards I did not want to watch. My mom said it was ok not to look but I could hear the sounds that broke the silence of that beautiful evening in the wild...
I would love my sons who are 14 and 17 years old to also experience such an adventure. Maybe some day...