I went... the first time I remember going properly was an Easter holiday and I must have been about... I'd say... 17, probably? 16, 17? Just when the imagination started running wild. And it really captured my imagination. I remember seeing a little elephant being darted [running fast], it was just the most incredible sight, you know? It's... wow. When you're actually there on the ground and see it and feel it and you can put a hand on this thing that's going up and down and it's just breathing... it is quite something... it's... it's hard to describe in words. That's when I really felt "the bug."
So did it awaken something in you, didn't it?
I think it did and I had no real idea that I would feel that way. But I never realized how much emotionally and sort of mentally it would affect me.
Is [Africa] somewhere you feel you can truly be yourself?
Yeah, definitely. I love the fact that I can go into any village in Kenya or anywhere down East Coast Africa really and you can just walk in a have a chat with someone and they'll have absolutely no idea who you are. Usually my swahili stops at about two sentences but we muddle through with English. There's no airs and graces out there and there's no sycophants or anything like that. You're very much treated as one of the team and if you're not pulling your weight you're told to man up and get on with it.