Not so long ago, I took a trip far away from home. I wanted to meet family that I didn’t know, they live in a place that was odd to me like their animals and their way of life.
I packed my bags and headed for South Africa. This is not about my family visit to Jo-Burg or Cape Town. This is about a moment in time.
It’s about the moment I was sitting in front of my hut in Kruger National Park, just before dinner time.
It was a beautiful day, full of sun, heat, animals and cruising. The group I was with were settling in for the afternoon. People were bathing, relaxing and drinking beer. It was so pleasant.
I was sitting in front of my hut, (yes it was round, grass roof and a bug net was included!) and suddenly I noticed the music was all over. It was the singing of the birds.
I see before me a tree that has a white/yellow truck. It is bare till the top, where it spans out. All around the trees were the same. The talking from the branches were loud and musical.
I closed my eyes and listened.
The birds were all over, trying to grab food from the many tourists.
The sounds were simply out of this world. I never heard anything like it since. It sounded like thousands of different kinds of birds fighting and talking between themselves, and I felt small and lucky to be able to stand there on that day.
The colors were brilliant greens, reds and vibrant purples, I was in awe. I never saw birds like that before. The colors were glossy, bright and the whole moment was surreal to me. Blacks were deep black, there were no birds that were plain only birds with the colors of the rainbow on their wings.
But, something happened on that day for me. I felt like I got closer to my origins, my pre-historic roots. I kept on picturing tribes sitting right where I sat, thousands of years before me. In my mindseye I saw them looking at the birds, hearing them like I did. Thousands of birds and the rest quiet, not like today when the noise of everyday life came into my space.
I pictured right then the San, one of the oldest tribes in South Africa sitting beside me. Listening like I did on that day. I wonder if they felt small against the animals and the trees?
That day, that trip, that park and those animals were full of yesterday’s spirits, for me.
I think it was the closest I ever got to my other passion, ancient history and pre-historic man.
There is a part of my soul that goes there sometimes. It settles with the animals, the trees and the quietness of the park and it is the most peaceful place I know.