A Devotion To The Emotions Of A Safari
The safari is an all-encompassing emotional experience. One does not just experience one emotion when out on a life-changing adventure like a safari, but many. One may think that a trip to Africa is simply just that, a trip, a vacation. However, until one actually arrives and falls into the experience, one cannot understand the deep impact it has on your mind, body and soul. There is raw adrenalin, there is deep appreciation, there is electric excitement, there is blunt realisation, there is understanding. One experiences the safari out on the plains just as much as one experiences it in their mind. The moments shared with loved ones, the moments shared with new friends, the moments shared with oneself, are endless.
There is no doubt that excitement and adrenalin is a key factor in any safari, especially for those who have not ventured on one before. The element of surprise, eagerness and anticipation. What is it going to be like? What am I going to see? How am I going to feel? These are all questions one may ask themselves before heading out on a safari. Then, when you actually arrive at your safari destination, that’s when the real excitement sets in. The sights you first take in, the sounds you hear, the lodge you see before you, all ignite feelings of emotional electricity. Your first game drive is a source of raw adrenaline. As you climb onto your vehicle, the engine roars and the vibrations go straight into your bones. You pull off away from the camp, and enter a new playing field for all kinds of emotion to enter your body. On your left, a Carmine bee-eater chases the wheels of the car, on your right, the glistening waters of the Okavango dance, above you, the blue sky wraps around you and all of the beauty and wild wonder below. Suddenly, the vehicle stops, and you see your guide looking out into the distance, your heart starts to race at the prospect of what he might have seen. It’s a leopard and her cub. You suddenly realise that most people don’t get to see something like this and you begin to smile at the realisation of your luck. After this incredible encounter, you drive out into the wild in search of more amazing experiences. As you drive, you realise that sometimes the true safari is not only in finding wildlife, but also just being within the rawness of this landscape itself. Every bird that flies past, every distant call of an animal, every flower, every long stretch of dry land, all culminate to make up the most sincere and beautiful emotional experience.
Some may not expect the safari to be as emotionally charged as it truly is. When you detach from the modern world you know and fully immerse yourself within wild, untouched beauty, your emotions are bound to dance. Even the smallest things like waking up and looking out at a new African sunrise, sipping a fresh hot coffee on your balcony, laughing with the lodge staff or even just talking with your loved ones around a fire, is enough to prompt tears. There is just something so different about Africa’s beauty, it is both external and internal, unlike anything else on earth. It’s electric atmosphere seeps deep into your soul and awakens a new happiness and new appreciation, unlike anything you recognise. To see a lion cub you have only seen in magazines, to see a Lilac-breasted roller bird soar and chant above you, to see an elephant calf mimic its parents, to see even just the sun bouncing off the water’s surface, is all a truly breathtaking and an extremely awakening experience. One may feel that disconnecting from the world you know may be an uncomfortable experience, but no one returns the same after a safari, in the best way possible. To have your emotions lit with Africa’s match means to unlock a part of yourself you didn’t know existed. You never thought that a sunset could cause you to fall into a trance of unexpected emotion, purely because you are so far removed from your world. The connection you make to this unfamiliar place almost causes it to become familiar, as you realise that people are naturally not supposed to be trapped in a chaotic modern day rat race, but rather connected to their roots and the natural world.
Africa is a classroom and the safari is its teacher. You will learn how important it is to reconnect with Mother Nature and you will learn more about human nature through animal sightings; observing how animals reflect our own emotions and actions. To see how a mother lion protects her cubs with her life, to see how elephants mourn the loss of a herd member, to see how a leopard carries her young through treacherous landscapes to safety, to see how brothers and sisters stick together, to see animals caress and kiss one another, will show you how connected we are to nature without even knowing it. You will learn, most importantly, to slow down and connect with what is right in front of you instead of through a screen, you will learn that the natural way of life is peaceful and systematic, not chaotic and fast-paced as we are so used to in everyday life. You will learn to form deeper connections with those around you, you will learn the significance of the smallest things, you will learn to see the beauty in the mundane and you will learn to tap into a deeper part of yourself; a more understanding, open and connected part.