Namibia desert Wildlife and Culture continue to be a very pleasant surprise for us.
Last year we retreated here to get away from the rainy season building in other parts of Southern Africa. We didn’t expect much and were mostly going to bide our time for a month or so before going back to the ‘real’ Africa.
Very large and sparsely populated the climate is harsh. At first I thought the flora, fauna and people adapted just to survive but the more I observe the more I realize how well they all thrive. Just as we have learned to do here.
Survive, Like, Love, and Live.
The metaphor for us “comfortable spoiled” people is; more is not necessarily better. Think of the Desert Elephant who delicately lovingly feeds off the few available trees and the Kruger elephant thrashing and crushing leaving devastation behind… sound familiar, look around?
As we travel often the happiest people are those who have less and live and love more.
There is also a different approach to Wildlife Conservation here. The government has major controlled areas they maintain but 17% of the country is broken up into Conservancies where the few people have responsibility for their region including the Wildlife. They then push the Golden Goose story, train for sustainable use and give free rein to the conservancies to protect and utilize their assets.
Of course there are pros and cons which have led to multiple scenarios of success and failure as they stumble along.
But the disturbing thing is this works well where very little is needed to love and live, but as money and power begin to enter the picture the more the culture morphs towards a Kruger Elephant. And China isn’t helping. Sure all the new roads and Strip Malls seem “good” for the people but I can’t help thinking the Desert Elephant had the best deal.
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