The Moorish influence on the architecture of Seville is incredible. Even the giant Gothic Cathedral relies heavily on the original mosque on the site for one of its wings. When I go to post photos from this city, I often have to pause and figure out whether they were taken in Spain or Morocco.
So, as it turns out, I had one more photo of the female lion from my lion walk in Zambia left. I’m pretty sure this is the last one though.
She looks pretty intense in this photo because one of the handlers was running back and forth to peek her interest. I’m not sure I’d recommend that myself. It kept things interesting though.
I’m going to take a long trip in Sept/Oct. At the moment the plan is South East Asia… but right now I want to go take more photos of lions.
It’s late, so I picked a picture that speaks for itself… to find out more on this pic, click here.
Once you get over the initial holy-crap-there’s-an-unrestrained-lion-five-feet-away-from-me moment you kind of relax into enjoying your experience walking with lions. Then, the female decides to suddenly burst on ahead and climb 10 feet up into a tree to look down on you and you feel your adrenaline spike again.
If you’re wondering what she’s staring at so intensely, it’s my travel buddy. She works with large animals for a living, but that didn’t stop her from turning her back on the lion up the tree to pose for a picture directly below it. I turned my back on a large cat I was a handler for once, a friendly puma called Gato, and wound up with my hip in its mouth. Thankfully, it only applied light pressure. So, watching my friend turn her back on a freaking lion made me nervous. The guide was fine with it though. He was the one holding her camera.
I was stood on the viewing deck of the campsite where we spent our last night in Namibia. My camera gear was down by our tent and as I watched the sunset develop I contemplated just watching it and not taking any photos. Then I decided to go for it. I ran and grabbed my gear, crossed a dry river bed on the other side of the camp and went in search of a good shot. The further away from camp I walked (not very far) the more I wondered what sort of predators there were in this area. Then, I entered a clearing, full of springbok. There had to be at least thirty of them. They didn’t stick around for long, they took off as soon as they saw me. Well, I hoped it was because of me.
This encounter reminded me I really was out in the wilderness and I beat a hasty retreat. The retreat was paused briefly to snap one more photo, this one.
Baobab trees really are fascinating. Grand in stature they loom over the Zambian landscape like giants frozen in time. Surprisingly, they are completely hollow on the inside. We got to experience this first hand when our guides took us to a lodge where they’ve actually put a door in the side of one of these mammoth trees that opens up to reveal a bathroom! This discovery was pretty shocking, but I found that people actually used this toilet more shocking. Just above head height, sleeping inside the tree were a handful of bats. I wonder how many people wound up running out with their pants around their ankles after startling the bats.
Another interesting thing about baobabs is that their greatest enemy is elephants. Using their tusks, they peel the trees and eat the bark, causing big holes to form. We can see the result of this practice in today’s picture.