Desert Tales: Of Rustlers and Saving Refreshment

A close friend of mine once served as a policeman in Kalahari ranching country.  As happens where cattle roam arid grazing land, rustlers find opportunity to lead away valuable critters on the hoof when no one is watching.  My friend was assigned to investigate just such a case. With a contingent of fellow officers he … More Desert Tales: Of Rustlers and Saving Refreshment

Going Deep and Wild: Ramble With a Kalahari San Traveler

I stood hitchhiking across from the Kalahari Arms Hotel at a crossroads in Botswana’s ranching country.  Hang around the Arms long enough and old timers will tell with glee about the goat known to wander in at drowsy midday hours to devour the bar kitty leaving only coins as a tip.  Kalahari survival has its … More Going Deep and Wild: Ramble With a Kalahari San Traveler

Going Deep: Singing Crawdads and Lithophones

Delia Owens, wildlife conservationist and briefly a neighbor in the Kalahari, has now written a crime novel set in coastal Carolina.  ‘Where the Crawdads Sing’, the title taken from her mother’s term for the back-of-the-back-of-beyond where the wilds harbor impossible beauty and secrets, is a nod towards the music – the exquisite music – inherent … More Going Deep: Singing Crawdads and Lithophones

The Bones: Buried – and Empowered – at the Crossroads

Scattered across southern Africa, at highway intersections, as at village crossroads, an unnoticed dynamic is in play.  In the dead of night, a traditional healer has crept on to the scene and buried there, in secret, the tools of a diviner’s trade: small bits of bone, shells, sundry coins, buttons and stones.  In a region … More The Bones: Buried – and Empowered – at the Crossroads

Molepolole: Dark Beauty Below the Roofing Sheets

From earliest times, water sources and wells have been the scene of rare encounter, of betrothal and alliance, of secrets, struggles and dreams, yes, and of slaking thirst for mortal and beast, nowhere more earnestly than in the arid interiors of the planet’s landmasses.  When desert winds drive storms of dust and sand, when the … More Molepolole: Dark Beauty Below the Roofing Sheets