Written by: Patrick Tillard
The Thompson’s gazelles stood no chance as they tip-toed into the water of the Mara River after much anxious deliberation. As their bodies sunk deeper into the water, three 20-foot Nile crocodiles started making a beeline for the gullible gazelles.
And then, smash – the water erupted as if a grand piano had fallen from the sky – a crocodile smashed into the first gazelle, sending the other potential victims into disoriented panic. The herd scattered.
For the frontrunner, the pied piper that led the small herd into jeopardy, death came fast; drowned and then ripped apart in vicious corkscrew rolls before calm resumed and the ripples faded. The whole ordeal lasted no longer than two minutes.
I can’t help but respect the fortune of our timing, and wonder just how much ‘drama’ plays out within the Mara Triangle amphitheatre without an audience. This is the beauty of going on safari, where tourists are thrown into a front row seat to the most natural ecosystem left on Earth, where life and death are part of everyday proceedings – this is the world that hasn’t changed, and will hopefully remain. Here, no two days are ever the same.