I’ve always made a habit of looking in the opposite direction from where everyone else is looking. Sometimes what’s behind is a lot more interesting than what is in front.
Once, in the Serengeti, while everyone else focused their binoculars on a small flock of Meyer’s parrots, I turned in the opposite direction and found a cheetah by the side of the road, staring intently at our vehicle – perhaps with the wish to make it go away. Apparently we had interrupted him stalking a herd of impala grazing just beyond the parrots.
In June, on the banks of the Chobe River in Botswana, as our vehicle jockeyed with others for a glimpse of a leopard in a tree, I turned away to the sound of splashing and raucous honking. Egyptian geese – in a mating mood. The female surfaced as my camera clicked – had the male deliberately forced her underwater? Is that part of the mating ritual?
Ancient Egyptians considered these geese sacred. Depictions of them appear in hieroglyphs and wall paintings. Egyptian geese mate for life and both parents incubate the eggs – as well the father should, having nearly drowned his wife.