In memory of the 3rd Brother Lion
"LET ART SHINE"
My life's goal before I turned 35 was to travel to Africa and go on a photo safari. Since then I cannot
find anywhere on this earth other than Africa where I am truely at peace with myself. When I saw my first lion, I actually held
my breath. I tried not to blink because I did not want the moment to end. If my guide would have let me, I would have gotten
out of the buckie and given the lion a hug. I have been fortunate enough to travel on safari to many of Africa's National Parks
in the following countries: Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, and Zimbabwe. Some of these countries I
have returned to for additional safari holidays.
Last year it was time to come out from behind the
camera, and gain hands-on experience with the wildlife up close and personal. I volunteered with Harnas Wildlife Sanctuary in
Namibia. My favorite African wildlife to provide daily care for were the cheetahs (Cleo, Pride, Duma, JoAnne), lions (Zion,Trust)
and a leopard (Lost). I must mention my special cheetah, Gooeters, who is in his early 20's. I totally fell in love with him.
I quickly learned if he hissed at you, move away quickly. Another quick lesson, the roar of lions can literally make the hair
on the back of your neck stand up, especially when it happens nightly at any given hour. Not to mention that you are only sleeping
less than 1/2 mile from them!
The other portion of my time was spent conducting research in South Africa
with Siyafunda Conservation Initiative in Makalali Reserve (outside of Kruger Park). We did game count drives and GPS recordings
for 8 hours daily. I think I am through with riding in buckies on safaris. It is dangerous work...your hot chocolate never
stays in the cup, and it can be scary especially if you are prone to falling asleep on extremely bumpy roads for 6am game counts.
Future goal: Game Ranger - South Africa
If you have any questions or would like to hear further outrageous tales, you can
contact me here at:
Sherry Thurston - artist
328 Peru Road Sneads Ferry, NC 28460