Pangolin sighting a highlight
The third semester is in full swing and we are all ready to take it on. I’ve enjoyed capping off each night with a cup of coffee as I focus on studying. In the bush, you need to be aware of your surroundings and always check dark corners in your room carefully, especially if it is hot. A ‘not so welcome’ visitors got into my room – a ‘Mfezi’ (Mozambique spitting cobra). It only took four minutes for him to crawl in my room as I went to the bathroom. I left my door open and when I came back I heard something moving towards my cupboard. The first time round I couldn’t see what it was because the floor is painted black, but as I move closer I noticed the movement and the head shape. I then went outside to tell another student, of course, they did not believe me at all, as I was very calm. Earlier that day we also saw a Vine snake by another student’s cabin, but one of our trainers was able to move it away safely. We all know each other quite well now, our strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes, and it feels like home. We are all one big happy family.
Every time I travel back home, I share my encounters with friends and family. They all envy me and know how lucky I am to do this. I love sharing special moments with them during my time at Bushwise. One thing I did miss during the off week is the sunset view! Back home there are lights everywhere it’s difficult to appreciate the sunset the stars.
We also had our long-awaited first game drive for the semester. As the drive progressed we came across a herd of Elephants as always led by the oldest and largest matriarch. The biggest highlight of the drive was when we came across a Pangolin, it was my first time ever seeing one. This is an extremely rare animal to see in the bush. It is also the most trafficked animal in the world. They are critically endangered and need to be protected as much as possible. We were incredibly privileged to see this as many people living and working in the bush may never even see one.
A lot is happening this week, I’ve been nominated for Adventure Guide Award at the Lilizela Awards 2019. I will be flying to Pretoria for the interviews and in a few weeks after, I’ll be heading to the main event, it will be a delight to achieve the award. From there we will be awaiting the National Award Ceremony to take place in November.
We’re very busy with lectures and game drives. One interesting class was when we were being taught about South African wines and food pairing. As a guide you are sometimes expected to host your guests in the evening and being able to recommend excellent South African wines for your guests will no doubt impress them and add to their experience
My time here is very experimental. I get to learn a lot in and out of class, I took baking and cooking lessons from the kitchen staff and in that, I have found my new hobby. I made banana bread take back home and everyone loved it.
EXAMS, EXAMS, and more EXAMS. We’ve started writing exams, this calls for sleepless nights, and late-night cups of coffee.