A search for Origins. Science, History and South Africa's Caradle of Humankind"
editied by Philip Bonner, Amanda Esterhuysen and Trefor Jenkins. Forward by Phillip V Tobias.
When I came to look at a cottage on a farm, I feel in love with the cradle area. I knew that I had found my home from home. My other home being Kruger.
Are you going to be happy, living so isolated and alone? asked the estate agent. MM had landed in paradise. Alone was just a figment of imagination. I was surrounded by birds, reptiles, Jackal, all kinds of critters and creatures.
Moving is never easy and unpacking boxes remains one of my greatest procrastinations. I do believe that there is a strong nomadic strain in my DNA.
One of my first boxes had me reeling in surprise. It seemed a gift from the angels. It was actually my daughter's box and she had decided to leave some of her books with me. The history of the Cradle of humankind stared back at me.
This was my home and this was its history.
The Cradle of Humankind with the well know Sterkfontein caves is a world heritage site. The book takes you through the natural history, early fossils of all sorts and through the more recent political history. I never realised, for instance, that this was the scene of some of the imfamous and inhuman scorched earth policy of the boer war. I think that many from here must have ended up in the Irene concentration camp.
I think that I might well be living close to one of the early boer homesteads with the wonderful stone walls. What transpired here, I wonder?
It is not an easy book to read. Academics can get lost in theri own language. It is however a fascinating account of prehistory and the search for origins.