Gilles Nicolet

Hunters around a fire at dawn

In those days I often followed Barabaig hunters who were out hunting elephants with spears. A hunt could last up to a week or more, during which we’d walk hundreds of kilometers, often in thick bush. It was exhausting stuff. The nights we spent lying somewhere on the ground, always in a different place. I remember that what bothered me most were the ticks, which I could feel crawling all over my body at night. At first light i’d get into a frenzy and the first thing I’d do was spend a good half hour trying to remove them… It was often bitterly cold and we would wake up before dawn and light a big fire to warm ourselves to. On one particular night a lioness came after midnight. That day we had set fire to a large fallen tree and so we could see her well, moving only 10 to 15 meters away from us. She carefully circled our little camp, intrigued by the flames and by our smell. When she was done with her inspection she just squatted and peed, then left.

Enquire Now