JAMBO! (HELLO in Swahili) Today, is the eve of Joyous Kwanzaa. In the next seven days we will celebrate the Nguzo Saba, the seven principles of Kwanzaa which are: Umoja for Unity, Kujichagulia for Self-Determination, Ujima for Collective Work and Responsibility, Ujamaa for Cooperative Economics, Nia for Purpose, Kuumba for Creativity, and Imani for Faith.
Says this jumbo. More likely, she is just smelling the air for friends and foes. I remember this moment. And since she is an elephant, I know that she won’t forget either. We are in Tarangire National Park, which, if you look at my ‘reel’ of digital film, can only be described as a tapestry of elephant herds.
This herd has a few young ones and the older members are very protective of them. When we stop to take pictures, one of the bulls does a ‘mock charge’. He is irritated by the sound of our jeep’s engine. Our guide quickly shuts it off. Silence. The elephant calms down, having been shown the respect it expects.
The matriarch keeps a close eye on her herd - pushing a toddler along with her tusk, or smacking an errant youngster with her trunk. We frequently stop to observe the herds, enjoy their interaction and listen to them ‘talking’ in deep rumbles, hoping to catch a few words of wisdom.
Photo and text by VJ Singh | Far/Back | Tarangire National Park, Tanzania, July 2012