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Kian Barker
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Shakabarker Tours

Kian Barker

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A little wind

Greetings and Salutations,

Did you  think this little bush story was going to be about a bad case of the winds?  As a society we have always had a bit of an obsession about passing wind, and the general opinion is virtually split down the middle: there is little or no "fence sitting" on this topic. My guess is that the fence is a little uncomfortable,  possibly a balustrade fence, so sitting on it would result in a rather painful derrière.  For some folk, the issue of flatulence  starts with a little amusement, but can end up in moments, or weeks or years of zero  tolerance. Nothing. So if you thought this was about a plate of beans negotiating it's way down an alimentary canal , you are mistaken. This also has nothing to do with green house gasses, gaseousness,  flatulence or aerostatics brought about by a large expulsion of green house gasses to induce an aerodynamic state, although this little bush story is however green.

Generally the prevailing wind in this area (Isimangaliso) is  a light North Easterly, by day  and by night. This wind can reach the proportions of a gale and is often referred to as our trade wind or Madagascar wind. However there are rare occasions when there is no wind whatsoever: not even a leaf will flutter nervously neither will  a blade of grass shiver.  It is dead still,  almost like the lull before the storm but even quieter. Under these conditions in the heat of hot summer's'night, all hell seems to break loose in the insect world. During these trips on a Shakabarker night drive, there is a constant barrage of bugs, beetles, flies, horse flies, dragonflies, butterflies, dead flies, may-flies, greenflies, blackflies, ladybirds (very unlady-like when they are in a swarm), mosquitoes, gallinippers, gaddisfly, fireflies, midges, gnats, culex's, bees, honey-bees, drones, wasps, hornets, blister beetles, dung beetles, stag beetles, jewel beetles, bumble bees, humble bees (not seen here), cockroaches, lace wings, moths, flying ants and so on. These insects take a suicidal path to the two spotlights ,one positioned at the back of the vehicle and the other at the front. The only way to discourage them is to alternate the lights from the back to the front of the vehicle. This keeps the bugs rushing back and forth, creating momentary relief from this giant invasion of insects. Then these insects start invading jackets and clothing to find a nice place to settle and then the slapping,slamming, smacking, thwacking, buffeting, biffing, banging and jumping starts, as guests start a low key warfare against these tiny space invaders.  For those attempting to take photos of interesting nocturnal creatures, the trip becomesa vehicular dash from one point to the next, trying to stay ahead of these pesky insects that are intent on befriending a vehicle full of, by now, fairly humorless people.

Suddenly, almost as though someone had switched off the insect invasion,  they disappear without a trace and I begin to wonder if any of the  guests would have been more at peace with a plate of baked beans fighting it's way out of an alimentary canal, rather than putting up with this invasion of pesky insects. Fortunately  this is a rare event.  In nature, rare events are usually appreciated and revered. However this particular rarity goes into my blackbook.

Hasta la vista,

The Knight Wrydah

Posted by Kian Barker

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