My wife is a journalist. I enjoy and have a lot of respect for the media. But let’s be honest the dissemination of news via, print, the internet, radio or TV is not just about giving people information but also about generating revenue. So do boring happy everyday things generate a lot of revenue? No! Blood, guts, mayhem and disaster do.
That is why my phone and inbox were flooded by friends and family about the recent tragic death of a young woman in South Africa who was killed by a lion. Everyone wanted to know what I thought. I thought it tragic. I have kids older than that and can only imagine what her family is going through. I thought it stupid because if the rules had been followed it would not have happened. And I thought it further supports my feeling that it is better to see animals in their “home” out in the bush instead of at a park where they are enclosed, frustrated and constantly bombarded by humans and vehicles with no way to escape.
I am not CNN, Google News, CBS radio or the New York Times. But I want to use this small forum of disseminating information for which no revenue is or tries to be generated to state that being out in the wild with these beautiful creatures is the only way to really experience them. Seeing them live as they are meant to live, seeing them from the safety of a vehicle that is tall with a pop up top and with a knowledgeable and experienced guide is safe, wonderful and beautiful. I have been doing it for 15 years and not once I have felt threatened, afraid or nervous. Just in awe.
Seeing a mother lion with her cubs, or a baby zebra walk along with her mom, or a cheetah on a rock surveying a herd of wildebeests, or a leopard lying in the grass (I could go on and describe every animal I have seen, but I won’t) is to experience something breathtakingly beautiful and to confirm what an amazing and gorgeous planet we live on. And while awe or even ahhhhh does not sell, it is what you can and should experience out there.