Imberbe, thank you for that advice. I shall certainly take note and follow it. I thought my mother would spend most of her time resting quietly watching birds, but she has already made it clear that she intends to do as much as she can.
Last night I lay awake remembering Bruce Brydon. I wondered how his family was feeling. I feel very grateful for the role he played in my current bush addiction.
I remembered one night in particular. This happened when I went on a "spoor tracking" course lead by Bruce Brydon.
When we left for our sundowner drive, he joking said that he would guarantee us an elephant sighting. We arrived at our sundowner spot and he took us for a short bush walk. At a rocky outcrop he stopped... there were the elephants... It was bushman paintings, still in remarkable condition.
Bruce spent some time explaining that this must have been a place of great significance. He told us that the bushmen would attach great importance to certain places and spiritual expressions.
He then stopped... and became very serious. Something was troubling Bruce.
The mood changed, it became sombe. Bruce in particular seemed sad.
We walked back in silence. I glanced at my one daughter. I felt that eyes were following me. She looked afraid. My mouth was metalic as we walked through some reeds. For some reason I was so, so afraid. Something was there.
Once we reached the vehicle, the rush for sustenance of another spiritual nature was just too fast. Our group grabbed hold of drinks and we each went to find a suitable rock..
"listen to the silence", someone said.
We sat, watching the darkening sky. The silence breathed softly. It held us all.. Africa was calling her children.
I felt as though the ancestors were sitting with us.. we were all united in one great hymn. There was no death, not at this moment. I was very aware that every member of the group was been touched by something we did not understand. We were in a cathedral, a holy place of Africa.
We drove back in silence. The usual banter seemed superfulous. Once back, we had supper and Bruce shared more of his experiences. He told us that the elephant painting had suddenly brought back the memory of his friend, Sam Fourie who had been killed by an elephant.
That night touched me profoundly. It was, in my mind, a mystical experience.
Mapungubwe seems to be another such place of the mystical. A place of heritage and the ancestors.
I was restless last night remembering this experience. I was also thinking of Bruce and his family. They would be preparing to say, "goodbye". This is a son of Africa.
Then I thought of the date..Friday, 22 May 2009.
This mystical moment happened Friday, 23 May 2003.