It’s Hard to Say Goodbye Africa~

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You no longer run into rhino,
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sleeping in waterholes,
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visited by a friend.
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There is no need to break for baby waterbuck,
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crossing the road to mama,
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protected by papa, and watched by a drifting hippo.
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And of course you no longer see the elephant herds,
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with all the happy babies.
Thank you for coming with me to Africa. I hope we can go back there someday.
Cheers to you from Africa’s wonderful wild creatures~

228 thoughts on “It’s Hard to Say Goodbye Africa~

  1. What incredible photos of an amazing trip, Cindy. Wonderful memories. I must admit, I thought the rhino in the first picture was dead and thankfully you clarified that. I particularly like the picture of the male waterbuck giving you the eye.

    • It does, although I was shocked by the wild animals I encountered next in London and the golden eagles carrying on at The Holler right now. Thank God we have the wild things!

  2. Aw, yes indeed it’s hard to say goodbye to this and hope that you’ll take us back to Africa again in the future! By the way, those waterbucks are beautiful. This is the first time I’ve seen them and hadn’t any knowledge of their existence until you shared this post Cindy! I just love the markings on their fur! <3 ~Lynn

    • Yes, I never knew of them until my first trip to Africa, where I was leafing through the guide book trying to identify them! πŸ™‚ Aren’t they gorgeous. Thank you so much Lynne for sharing my love of these wonderful creatures. Blogging is rewarding because of people like you.

  3. Great series and it looks like you have enjoyed Africa so much, and getting the best of your last days there ~ the waterbuck shots are my favorite, beautiful animals. Safe travels ~

  4. Looked like an amazing trip. So sad to see the poached rhinos. The animals are all so unique in character and habitat, and every one poached or parts taken for souvenirs like the ivory from elephants is a sad reality.

    • It takes such cowardice to approach peaceful, grazers like this and shoot them with rifles. Remember Bungalow Bill? “Went tiger hunting with his elephant gun. In case of accidents he always brung his mum. Hey, Bungalow Bill, what did you kill?” Yuck.

    • I think all the time about my friends like you who actually lived there and left. It must be the penultimate homesickness. But at least you were lucky enough to live in a place that inspires such feelings.

    • I suppose if I encountered trophy hunters in Africa, I would take a bunch of photos of them and post them online, hoping they would get the reaction they deserve.

  5. I’m so pleased I was able to travel along with you on this fantastic journey Cindy. Now I wait in anticipation for the next destination… πŸ™‚

  6. These have been some of the most wonderful photos I’ve seen on Africa, such a treat to find them every day.. you are so skilled with words and pictures, its been a most moving journey with you, thank you Cindy

  7. I love all of these photos Cindy! The Waterbuck family are my favorites!! Thank you for sharing your wonderful Africa photos! Huge Lisa and Bear

  8. Especially when you were born there and lived there all your life. Glad you enjoyed Africa, Cindy. Thank you for your wonderful images.

    • Yes. I think of this every time I post on Africa. The homesickness engendered by leaving such a birthplace by my friends like you who lived there. It causes me grief leaving, and I have spent a month total there. I think that maybe the best way to look at it is how incredibly lucky you were to have lived in a place that inspires such grief upon leaving. “It is better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all.” Still I feel for you. I can clearly feel the nostalgic pull in the written comments from my blogging friends who lived in South Africa, and left, and I fully appreciate it Don. <3

  9. Thank you, Cindy for taking us along! You took so many special photos letting us enjoy seeing these majestic animals that we won’t have seen otherwise.

  10. Thank you for carrying me away to Africa, if only in my mind, via your photos! I hope someday to go there, but until then, your blog is the closest I’ll come! Your travels bring the world closer for so many of us — your work is wonderful!

  11. I’d never seen a waterbuck before — what a darling baby!! And I just can’t get enough of photos of elephants. Such splendid creatures; such a shame what poachers are doing to them.

    • If I think too much about poachers, I get despairing. so I don’t. I wonder how animals differentiate among humans and forgive us? I was reading documentation of all these deep sea dolphin rescuing humans. I wonder at their capacity for forgiveness~

  12. Cindy, you obviously will be reliving this experience and its multi-layers for many moons. It must be humbling to see such creatures as well as a land with such strong culture, history and politics.

    • It is a spiritually mind expanding experience that never leaves you. Africa has so much to teach us, ion so many levels, and I barely scratched the surface of one tiny part. Humbling indeed. Majestic too~

  13. What a magical journey. So delighted you shared this with us. Not sure you’ve seen it, but it’s been making it’s way around FB. They are dying rhino and elephant tasks pink. It makes them unsalable on the black market.

    • You’ve done one trip more than I. I have no idea if I will go back, but I fully appreciate why you went three times! If we keep on going, I wonder if eventually, we will not return. I could see this happening to me. The pull is so strong.

      • I was born and raised in Europe, right between Austria and Italy. A trip to Africa wasn’t so dramatic then, as a matter of fact it was the #1 tourist attraction in the 80’s.

      • In Europe I can imagine it was. It is an 11 or so hour flight from Europe. A one way trip to South Africa takes me 22 hours, still I grew up in La Jolla, and remember my grandfather’s home movies of Kenya, and of Treetops Lodge, the Masai. I still have the wood carvings he bought. He went and it must have taken him even longer. This was probably 1963 or so. It was unusual then. 90% of people who visit Kruger are South Africans which surprised me. Most American tourists go on led safari experiences, at super expensive lodges, and do not self drive. They pay a lot more for this and are not free to do their own thing, and they don’t develop their own skills and confidence. Plus, since it is so expensive, they only stay for short periods of time. On each trip to Kruger we encountered one American couple self driving, but many self driving Europeans.

  14. I’m going on a South African photo safari in September by way of Cape Town. I can’t wait! So glad I found your blog and your gorgeous photos. I’ll be scrolling through all of your posts. πŸ™‚

    • Oh how wonderful. I know how excited you must be, but your excitement now pales with how you will feel once your feet touch the ground in Africa. I look very much forward to hearing about your experiences!

  15. thanks again for taking us with ya on your adventures…beautiful photosπŸ˜ŽπŸ˜»πŸ˜ΊπŸ˜ΈπŸ…πŸ‚πŸ†πŸ«πŸͺπŸ•πŸ—πŸ˜πŸπŸ‡πŸƒπŸ’˜πŸ’žπŸ’—πŸ’œ

  16. it’s been a wonderful trip Cindy – thank you so much for taking us along. I do like the quiet story you tell, you’ve given us the best of the best. A very special visit ~

  17. Gracias por habernos mostrado la maravillosa fauna africana al natural. He disfrutado mucho con todas las fotos que me han transportado a esa naturaleza virgen. <3<3

  18. Liebe Cindy einen schânen Mittwoch wünsche ich dir es sind wunderschâne Fotos sei ganz lieb gegrüßt Klaus in Freundschaft

  19. Laughing, we are going to Yellowstone, Waterton and Glacier in Canada in September to look for wolves and Grzzlies. Jim just booked us on a last minute, super cheap deal to Germany, Austria, Slovakia and Budapest while I was out grocery shopping. It is an amazingly cheap flight and we leave in November. I was looking at hotel prices in these parts of Europe in early November, unbelieveable deals! Eeeeeks this is a lot even for me, but there are all these places we haven’t been too, and think of all the great food! Laughing…….

    • Yes. They tend to be the places you go back too, despite distance or hardship! Patatgonia, Africa, and Antarctica are like this for me. Canada too, although minus the hardship!

  20. Aww 😟 It ended so soon. We were having a nice vacation in Africa from the comfort of our homes. Thank you for the beautiful tour . I enjoyed every bit of it. Especially the two headed giraffes.

  21. I simply adored your doing all the hard work, Cindy! Traveling far, enduring heat and being close to danger: All for our entertainment! I liked the rhinos, waterbucks, and especially baby elephants in this last leg of your adventure. Have a safe and lovely trip home, Cindy! β™‘

  22. This was a wonderful trip.
    Where are we going to next?
    I want to make sure I pack the right wardrobe for the location. πŸ˜‰

    • Well, that’s where the foxes come in! πŸ˜‰ Plus I went to a tattoo/barber shop and got a very severe haircut that looks just awful but it was a completely novel and very fun experience. I have never been in a place like that and it was most fascinating, and, no, I didn’t get a tattoo! πŸ˜‰

    • So horrible to contemplate the reality of actual extinction of a sub-species particularly when we knew about it and had time to take action. Unforgiveable. Period. As you know there are about 8 or so subspecies of Black Rhino, the Western is now extinct as you sadly point out. In Kruger,southern black rhinos are making a small but hopeful recovery, but are still very endangered. It makes me weepy, after walking amongst these gentle grazers.

    • It really does, and when you see photos or read about it, it brings up this bitter-sweet nostalgia and thougths of , “Oh, I want to go back!” πŸ™‚

  23. Cindy, have you read the story about the dentist from Minn that killed the lion is Zimbabwe? Very sad story. I hate to see these beautiful animals hunted even though the authorities use the fees for conservation, I still find it heartbreaking.

    • Yes. I read several stories about him. He paid $55K to lure a collared lion out of a protected reserve with meat. He shot the lion outside of the park with an arrow. The lion was injured. He found the lion 40 hours later and shot him. He skinned the lion and took his head, hid the collar. The lion was well known in the park and was the patriarch. Now all his cubs will be killed by rival lions wanting to assume his place. This dentist has photos of himself with rhino, leopard, and big horn sheep he killed slowly with his bow and arrow. He has a criminal conviction for illegaly killing black bear in the US. I went to his yelp page and left a rude comment which I never do. I said he was a little man, with big arrows, and no heart. I am sick about these kinds of actions. I read that he most likely won’t be prosecuted. Leopards, rhinos, big horn sheep, lion, are vulnerable species in the wild. America’s gun and kill culture is just revolting. You can tell I am bothered by this. Seeing these animals in the wild, it is just impossible to understand how someone would want to kill them slowly and painfully.

      • I agree. I have joked that man/woman can eat and kill anything he can drag out of the wild with his/her bare hands. This story made me so sad for humankind. I know we are capable of great moments, but their are times that our destructive nature is overwhelming.

      • I think I grew up inside the book. I would read the jungle book, about Nag, the evil cobra Rikki-Tikki-Tavi fought. I closed the book, and there would be a snake in the garden. To me, it was normal. I lived “inside” the Book. (Add to that I was born in India…)
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        But the book is still there. You can go back inside just about any time. Grab a plane… Oh. Not yet. Next year…

        • I finally met lots of very big Rikki-Tikki-Tavis a few years ago. They were living under a place we stayed. Rudyard Kipling was one of my favorite authors as a child which is one of the reasons I felt so enchanted with Africa and seeing places in the book, like the “The great grey green greasy Limpopo River all set about with Fever Trees.” I even saw the trees!

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