Good Morning beautiful Safariosophers!
I am on leave. This means that an incredible work cycle in Timbavati has come to an end and I’m in the big city again. It’s been 5 weeks of incredible wildlife sightings and the safari guests who I’ve got to share them with. I love every moment of this life. Thank you to each and every one of you!
But now as I sit here in a hair salon undoing the ‘wild’ from my hair, it makes me think that bush people like me really shouldn’t be allowed in cities and malls and salons and things. Because we go a little crazy. Every time.
Take yesterday afternoon, for example. A simple trip to a very newly Americanized Rosebank Mall, to indulge in Krispy Kreme doughnuts and Starbucks, turned into a life changer.
Why? Because doughnuts aren’t life changers in themselves.
I bought a camera. I didn’t plan to. Not yesterday, anyway. But the deal was too good to pass up on. I didn’t buy just any camera, I bought a really really nice camera. This means that from now and onwards, I’ll be taking photos using an actual camera and not by holding my binoculars up to my iPhone camera.
There are photos in my Instagram that get great reviews and comments. What lens did I use? What was my ISO? No. No no no. What’s an ISO? I just mastered the art of holding my binoculars just right with a shaky hand and cropping the photo later. Winning. Except taking these gorgeous photos gave me a bug. A high. Here’s the admission that I like wildlife photography. And now I own a camera. Perhaps I’ve entered into an endless trap. One that will suck out all of my money and turn me into a safarier who sees animals as objects in good or bad lighting, and not as glorious, living creatures who make life worth living. That’s my deal breaker. The day I look at a lion and think, ‘gee, I wish the sun was just a little more over your left ear…’ is the day I stop. Full stop. Or the time I sit with a leopard and worry that the light is too ‘challenging’. That’s the end. I promise. That’s the day I’ll sell up. Anyone want a Nikon D7100? Nope. Not yet.
What I want to achieve here is something like this: while I’m sharing a brilliant wild dog sighting with guests, I’d like the experience to be like, “Hey guys! Isn’t it wonderful that these dogs are cooperative breeders and all of puppies are raised by devoted parents as well as supportive aunties and uncles and I can see you’re struggling to get good photos this early in the morning, so just try and widen your aperture slightly.” Love. I don’t know how this all works yet and I’m not pretending I know what an ‘aperature’ is, but the seed is planted. #safarigoals
But now to celebrate this new foray into wildlife photography, I present some of my favourite images from the past couple of months in Kruger. All taken by holding a pair of binoculars up to a sensible rose gold iPhone SE…