Elephants and hares

Trip Start Jul 19, 2009
Trip End Oct 25, 2010

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Flag of France  , Aquitaine,
Wednesday, June 17, 2009

I know I've been neglecting this blog terribly but the truth is there is not that much to write about. Mostly because of my back still playing up which means no long walks or wild parties - assuming there are any on offer. So my days are spent in and around the house. In the garden when it's not too hot. It has been hot though and thankfully the thick stone walls of the cottage keep it nice and cool inside; no air-co needed.

Today was not one of my finest days, so after sunset I took myself up the hill to admire the views and sort myself out.
Almost at the top I see an animal on the path. It was hard to make out what it was, peering against the remains of the light. A fox, a cat?
It was a hare. First time I saw one here. Actually, you don't come across that many wild animals here. A deer, a badger, squirrel, the occasional boar or rabbit. But for most it's domestic and farm animals.
This was a nice surprise. He was very big with enormous ears.
He had seen me too, and when I moved he moved. He'd then sit up, ears pricked up in the air, check me out, nibble a bit but always keeping the same distance between us. It was like a game.
When I tried to get too close he hopped off. I sat down in the grass hoping he would return if I kept very still, but he didn't.
Now I am wondering, where is he now? How do hares sleep? All tucked up together, babies and all? I suppose I could look it up, but it's nice to just imagine - to know he's out there somewhere, cosy and warm, sleeping.

I sat there for the longest time. Watching it grow dark, as the birds stopped singing and the stars appeared. The night air was balmy and sweet and I felt so at peace I wanted to lie back in the long grass and go to sleep. Wake up to the early morning sun without a care in the world.
I could still make out the silhouettes of the trees on the hills but without the details of the landscape it seemed I could be anywhere in the world.
I thought of Africa. Will there be a place there where I can sit like this, feel safe and one with my surroundings?
The stars will be the same, that's all I know. They will be my beacon.
No doubt there will be elephants and giraffes, amazing creatures,  I hope to see them, but should I happen upon a hare, hopping about, checking me out, I'll smile and think back to this uneventful, wonderful evening.
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