A PLACE OF BEAUTY.

I had every intention of sitting myself right down as soon as I had slept away the effects of my long flight back from South Africa

Instead days went by and I simply basked in the energy I had received whilst staying at Londolozi Game Reserve. Then, naturally life took over and I was swept up into the passing of days and then weeks.

Here I am, sat in the warmth of a June afternoon. Time to step forward into the world of words, photos and feelings.

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This is when I actually realised I had really returned to The Lowveld which we left almost exactly thirty years ago. Our Lowveld was over the border in Zimbabwe but the heat, the bush, the smell were as I remembered. My first night was spent in a beautiful chalet in Varty Camp and this was my view and my plunge pool for a tiny while. I had stepped into heaven and was warmly welcomed by the lovely Will, who is the Camp Manager of Varty.

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There are several camps which make up Londolozi and each is beautiful and each is different. My bathroom looked out onto Africa and as I wandered onto the deck I felt my shoulders ease and my breath lengthen. I sat quietly and felt the enormity of what I had committed to. Teaching yoga in this amazing place for two weeks and how would that be, how would I manage and was I capable? My previous blog post does mention that, yes I did cope and I was capable but for a while in the hot sun I truly doubted myself.

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I heard her first, trumpeting. Below me, she strolled slowly into the open. I have always had a great reverence for elephants. Their energy and presence fill me with an ancient awareness of The Land. I have seen many elephants and never, ever tire of a glimpse of them. Somewhere in the bush there were more but this beauty was sufficient to reassure me, I was and am enough. I would be fine.

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It is so easy to lose sight of ourselves and our own abilities. The treasures we hold inside and the depth of our own wisdom simply disappear in the rush and push of our lives. Once, so long ago, I was sat in a beautiful lodge in Meru Park, Kenya and along the horizon all I could see were elephants. They seemed to go on forever. The manager explained that many family groups were meeting together and they came from every direction, five hundred and more! They knew the journey and they moved towards their get-to-together, some having never been there before but simply answering a call on the winds. I have no idea if anything like that still happens in that part of Africa. It is a relatively remote region and so easy for poachers to move about in.

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Later in my time at Londolozi I got to go on a game drive and saw more elephants and because they are so used to the vehicles they get very close. I have never been so close and must confess to feeling a slight prickle of apprehension until I noticed the calm breathing of Callum our ranger. Relax, Gill, watch and feel the presence of these beauties,

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It must be said that many of the visitors and the staff are passionate photographers and their photos are truly beautiful. I simply used my phone and spent moments simply imbibing the feel of the scene before me….the memory will remain forever, I happily leave the rest to the experts.