Each area in Africa is unique, each with its own sense of place, but all bound by the single chord of a continent of extremes. I have had the privilege of visiting and working in many of the most beautiful and inspiring places. The wide open plains of the Masai Mara, the vast intoxicating silence of the Namib Desert and the intense beauty of the Okavango Delta have ripped at my emotions and left me with a feeling of deep contentment.
I have experienced moments so beautiful I have wondered at our misunderstanding of it all. I presumed I had reached a level of understanding and control. That was until I arrived at Mombo.
I was not prepared for Mombo!
Mombo is different to any place I know. It is a place that at times seems to be free of the single binding chord, a place where the echoes of the ancient song are louder than anywhere else. I attempted to figure out what the allure of Mombo is but then decided not to try and understand it but simply to appreciate it. It was then that my eyes began to open.
During my first night at Mombo I woke from a restless sleep to hear a lion roaring close to the camp. I listened as it moved away toward the north. Some time later I heard a faint distant roar from the south and then the sounds of a lion/hyena dispute on the floodplain in front of our room.
One of the most thrilling experiences in the wilderness areas of Africa is to hear a lion roar from the darkness. It shakes the soul!
That first night at Mombo I heard three separate incidents. At the time I thought this was unusual but I soon realized that at Mombo this was the norm rather than the exception. There have been nights that I have followed interaction from five separate locations.
The predator interaction at Mombo is what captures the imagination of most people who have been privileged to experience this place, but this is only a small part of the whole. I attempted to capture some of the aura in verse and images but for much of the time I simply observed. What I found was a place that is closer to the Eden of our yearnings than any other place in Africa.
Mombo moves to the currents of the Okavango Delta, but at times seems to pull away and dictate its own rhythm ... The Secret Realm
From The Secret Realm by Leigh Kemp