Local guide, Zimbabwe

“I used to be a guide. I showed them the rock where the cheetah sleeps” he said, his eyes pleading for something but I wasn’t quite sure what. “I was a guide for the animals, but not anymore, not since they stopped coming here”. Again his eyes widened as they desperately searched my face for something, perhaps just an acknowledgement that he was once useful. … Continue reading Local guide, Zimbabwe

Great Zimbabwe ruins

Sprawling medieval ruins of granite drystone walls that once hosted a royal dynasty. You’d be forgiven if you thought that this was a description of an archaeological site in Western Europe. The Great Zimbabwe ruins are located in the southeastern hills near Lake Mutirikwe and the town of Masvingo, close to the Chimanimani Mountains. Even the temperate climate could be mistaken for European. It was … Continue reading Great Zimbabwe ruins

Meet a lion

Similar to the previous post with cheetahs. But with me. And with lions. We spent three nights at the magnificent, but inappropriately named, Antelope Park in Gweru, Zimbabwe. Here there is a pioneering multi-stage breeding programme which aims to release lions bred in captivity into the wild. It’s not something that’s been achieved before, but if successful would be a massive boost to the declining … Continue reading Meet a lion

Doctor Roulston, I presume

In 1871 journalist Henry Morton Stanley was dispatched to Africa by the New York Herald to find David Livingstone who, after his putative discovery of the Falls, his admirable efforts to emancipate the locals from slavery, and his questionable attempts to convert the locals to Christianity, had been disconcertingly quiet for some time. In November of that year he found him residing on the shores … Continue reading Doctor Roulston, I presume

Victoria Falls

I can understand why in 1855 fellow Glaswegian David Livingstone claimed to have discovered the Victoria Falls, despite it having been well-known to locals as the “smoke that thunders” for centuries. Walking around the surrounding eponymous town, the only signs of the Falls are a constant background wall of white noise and a band of localised cloud rising from the trees. You know you are … Continue reading Victoria Falls