Monday, September 28, 2009
If you have read a few of these blog entries, you know they are mostly about philosophy, introspection and weird beetle bugs. Adventures and wild animals would be awesome, but the shameful truth is that I'm not hard core. I have purposely tried to avoid animals. They scare me. Because of the pointy bits.
In Botswana, I mostly slept in the forest at night. There are tons of scrubby thorn bushes everywhere. I would hide my tent in the scrub a little way off the road. The route I chose avoided elephants. People have cows and if they find a lion they call a team from Gaborone to relocate it to the game parks. Occasionally there are other small predators. You sometimes hear jackals or the odd hyena. If you sleep in a tent they won't bother you.
But one night, I woke up needing to pee when I heard something sniff just outside my tent next to my head. One idea was to scare it away by making a loud noise or spraying pepper spray out there. On the other hand, that might just make it curious or annoyed so doing nothing might be safer. The only thing I knew for sure was that I was going to need to rig an indoor toilette together using an empty can of baked beans.
For the next few hours until dawn I had my pepper spray in hand, ready to leap into action. In the morning I put all my tracker skills into practice looking for droppings and footprints. It turned out that the sound was my tent rubbing together in the breeze.
Posted by Dan Carpenter at 12:16 AM