Tuesday 24 September 2013

Time to make a difference

They have some classy stuff in the shops at Joburg airport: lovely jewellery, clothes, carvings and household items (also plastic vuvuzelas, natch - and I saw some bought. What larks ahead!) overwhelmingly adorned with elephant, zebra, giraffe and lion. You have to look for the rhino.

Pretty much like real life, then. Except for us on this trip, with our exclusive focus and contacts: we were literally up close and personal with these 50 million year-old prehistoric creatures, big and little, black and white, and it was such a privilege. I come from an elephant home, thanks to one chance soft toy 22 years ago (go, Ditty!) but I'm a rhino convert now.

They're so massive, so odd-looking, so totally harmless if you leave them alone. All they want to do is eat grass or leaves and get on with producing their ridiculously cute babies (I glimpsed a 10-day old black calf - totally adorable). But through an evil combination of greed, ignorance and ruthlessness, they could all soon be gone. And that would be inexpressibly sad. www.imakeadifference.co.nz

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