Animal (Well, Insect) Encounters

A few weeks ago I had one of those truly “Africa” moments. The only place you can have these moments is somewhere in the middle of Africa. Sometimes they are good, and sometimes they are bad. This one was definitely interesting.

Sunday night I was laying in bed trying to sleep when I kept feeling something crawling over me. After I killed four or five ants, I decided to turn on my flashlight on and face my fear. Sure enough, my room was crawling with hundreds of ants. I was having my first encounter with the dreaded mposhi – an army of biting ants was literally swarming my house. I jumped out of bed and fled my room, but unfortunately the ants were pretty much everywhere, including the porch outside. After a few minutes of stomping and cussing, I went to find some help. I really had no idea what to do with all these ants. I found the night watchmen, who just looked confused when I told him I had mposhi in my house. He thought maybe I had a snake – so I gave it another try. I tried to explain I had ants (you know, small bugs) all over my house. Finally he came with me to look. His solution was to wake up my neighbors and after they told him they couldn’t help, he unlocked the other guest house and I spent the rest of the night there. I managed to escape from my ant-filled house with a flashlight, flip-flops and my ipod. The rest of the night I kept feeling invisible ants crawling all over, but I managed to get a good night’s sleep in the guest house after everything. In the morning, most of the ants had cleared out, but there were still a few stragglers. Besides a little emotional distress, the incident went pretty well. If nothing else, it was a truly African experience!

Also, this week I found a new path to run in the park. I had been wondering how to get across the stream to the place where I see dozens of puku everyday and I finally figured it out. So now I see the puku almost everyday I go for a run. Usually I just see them on the side of the path and they run away, but sometimes they just stand there and watch me jog past. Although there are tons of puku in the park, it is still a fun experience to see wild animals when out for run!

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One thought on “Animal (Well, Insect) Encounters

  1. oh… that must have hurt… I had ants biting on me when I sleep as well, but I dont know where they come from. At first, i thought i had bed bugs or something so i changed my bed sheet, but to no avail i wake up with red rashes, till one night i woke up in pain with their bites and caught them red handed. What are pukus? I want to go to Africa too as I love nature but I dont think I can live there without the luxuries that the city could provide.

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