The Night of the Flying Gecko
So here we are on our first "SAFARI", the wife and me. We are guests of "Lion's Den" in the Gwaii River district of Zimbabwe, hunting with Thys De Fries (unfortunately this farm was taken away many years ago by crooks and disseminated. They were given 20 minutes to get out under threat of guns). Lion's Den, an interesting name with some meaning. A family owned farm for many generations. During the conflict, a small group of lions were kept in the compound yard at night. I asked if they ever had any trouble during the conflict as I had seen many buildings in the surrounding area still bearing the scars of fires. All I heard was that they were never bothered. :-)
Anyway, back to the gecko. This was an outstanding farm and accomodations. Thatched roof roundovals and main house and dinner room. On our 7th day there a German couple came into camp hunting with another PH for Sable (a poor shot, a 3 day tracking job, a story for another time). He could speak a little English, she not a word, but, in usual hunter ways, we communicated. He had a very nice Blaser that he was very proud of (this was back in 1999). As we were enjoying another sumptuious dinner, at a lull in the conversation, we heard a loud "thump" in the middle of the table. In looking over I saw a 6 inch long gecko laying stunned on the wood top. Obviously it lived in the thatch roof that soared 20 feet over our heads and had fallen from the apex to the table. I thought it waas probably dead, the German lady was agast and my wife looked on in disbelief. As I was the closest to the lizard, I stood up and reached over to pick it up and dispose of it. Much to my surprise, as soon as I touched it it took off running. Where did it run to you might ask? HAH, right toward the German lady! It proceeded to run right through her plate of grilled springbok and Au Grautin potatoes, jumped in her lap and ran down her leg and disappeared out the door. Now you gotta picture this, she was stunned herself for a second, got her composure back, pushed her plate of food away, got up and left the table. Not to make fun of her I refrained form laughing out loud. The rest of us finished our dinner and retired to the fire for stories.
Ever since then, we have had a great evening campfire story to tell of the "Night of the Flying Gecko". Just another of many African experiences we have seen in 5 trips, working on #6.
IF YOU GO ONCE-YOU WILL GO AGAIN-DEAL WITH IT!