Saturday, October 25, 2008

Out on tour

I am leaving tomorrow for a tour. The tour finishes on the 12th of November. I am doing a birding tour on a freelance basis for Safari Wise Tours and Safaris.

This is the first tour that I have done with this company. It sound as if they really have a lot in common with what I plan for Frantic Naturalist, and so this is a great opportunity. I love doing birding tours as well, so it's a double bonus.

I will be back and blogging after the 12th of November. Look out for new posts and pictures from my tour.

Just to give credit where it is due, the last four tours that I have done, have all been for Namibia Track and Trails.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Finding my own bushman painting

Did you watch Indiana Jones? Sure you did. Do you dream of treasure hunting or finding lost stuff? It's exciting. Most of us don't really have the chance to do that in our lives unless we are academics or museum staff. But I have. I didn't find a lost city (Ark of the Covenant in the case of Indiana Jones)...I found one single, unclear bushman painting in the mountains near Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge in 2004. It's my lost city...I still love going back there and having a look at it. To the best of my knowledge, no people saw this painting between the bushmen who painted it (perhaps a hundred years ago, perhaps a little longer) and me. How special is that.

While I worked as a guide and assistant manager at Sossusvlei Mountain Lodge, I had the pleasure of meeting many interesting people. One of those was one of our guest astronomers who had a special interest in archeology and know a lot about bushmen. While he stayed at the lodge (around May 2004) he found an overhang with some bushmen paintings in it. I got excited. I learned what I could, and set out on a quest to find bushmen rock art in the surrounding hills. I learned a lot and found many other artifacts. For a while I thought thought that I would never find any rock art, but then one day in a ravine, I managed to spot a painting near a seasonal waterhole. It was faint, but there is no mistaking what it is, a single springbok painted on the rock. There is what appears to be a rhino above it, but that's it.

Interested in bushman rock art:

Bushmen Rock Art