We were away from home and in the “big city” for a week. We spent some special time with family and dear friends in Pretoria and Johannesburg. And as much as we are going to miss everyone that side again, I have to say it was awesome to drive over the bridge towards Malelane Gate and our home on Wednesday!

 

I had closed our big front gate when we left. But now, when I got back with two tired and grumpy boys in the car, I struggled to get the gate open… Our front gate stays in place with two metal rods that you lift to open and close it, but I could not lift them to save my life! So I had a good look. One of the rods was completely bent ninety degrees. What on earth…?

Our gate damaged by an elephant
I finally managed to get our front gate open

When I finally got inside and the boys out of the car, I had a look around the garden. Three piles of dung confirmed my suspicion: An elephant had pushed the front gate open, bending the metal rods! Compared to the elephant that would carefully scale the fence of our yard in Letaba (read my blog “There is an elephant at my window” here), this is an EXTREMELY naughty and very determined elephant!

 

Elephant dung in our garden in Kruger
the evidence left by the perpetrator. All flattened by the lovely rain we had!

A quick check of the veggie patch showed no elephant damage there. And my radishes, peppers and potatoes are actually looking good! I later learnt that our neighbours heard the elephant push the gate open and they came to my vegetable’s rescue. It apparently wasn’t easy to get this young bull out of our yard. And when he finally left, he went straight to their gate and also pushed it open! Oh dear. I think we have a very stroppy elephant on our hands here! The bush around us is greening up nicely after the rain we had. There should be enough food for the elephant in the veld. I hope he stays there for now!

Veggies still looking good after the elephant pushed open the front gate!
Radish, peppers and potatoes in my little veggie garden

Two days before I left, we had about 14mm of rain and I got another 12 in my rain gauge during our absence. It is such a beautiful time of year now and it actually looks like the bush has exploded with bright, fresh green leaves overnight! The type of bright green you only get once a year after the first rains.

 

The Mopani pomegranates are flowering here and there; making the scrub that looks completely bland out of season, a stunning yellow feature in the middle of all the green. I cannot wait for the first impala babies to be born!!

13 thoughts on “When the cat is away…

  1. Thank you, you make me feel as if I am sitting in your garden. I really wish could be in the park now to recharge my very flat batteries.

  2. Hi Linda
    Thank you, that was interesting. Your veggie garden got spared this time. I suspect not for long😃😃😃
    Even if you loose your veggies, it is still worth living in the Kruger.
    Cheers
    Cor Rademeyer

    1. Haha, we will have to see Cor! The veld is getting greener by the day. Maybe my veggies will get spared, maybe not. It is and has been an interesting experiment! Have a lovely weekend! Linda

  3. I suppose the veg may have been rather small fry for that bull, but what amazes me is that no antelope came in and polished them off!!! You were lucky! I love coming back home when I’ve been away – not that I don’t enjoy going away but when I come back its like seing my home afresh and noticing all sorts of little things abot it – changes in the garden (luckily not wrought by elephants 🙂 ) ; how comfortable my bed is and so on.

    Sal

    1. Hi Sal! I fixed the fence where the impalas were coming in so for now at least, the garden is bokkie proof;-)
      Coming home is amazing! When I was still flying, people would ask me what my favourite destination was and my reply would always be: Home! xxx

  4. Thank you so much for bringing me closer to Kruger. I live overseas for over 2 years now. Apart from missing people I love, i am pining over the loss i feel for Kruger. I visit it every day through the webcams. It has left a huge gap in my life. I used to visit it at least 2ce a year with my kids. So your blog and your simple and beautifully written blog is a great connector with one of my sacred spaces! Keep on connecting us with the spirit of that place!

  5. Thank you so much for bringing me closer to Kruger. I live overseas for over 2 years now. Apart from missing people I love, i am pining over the loss i feel for Kruger. I visit it every day through the webcams. It has left a huge gap in my life. I used to visit it at least 2ce a year with my kids. So your simple and beautifully written blog is a great connector with one of my sacred spaces! Keep on connecting us with the spirit of that place!

  6. Tania’s message reflects my, and I am sure many others, situation. Well written Tania. As a child, I have been visiting Kruger since the early 60’s. Since then, my family and I visited Kruger every year and we have many stories to tell. We took our daughters on most of the trails and we talk about our experiences frequently. We have been living in Australia now for 9 years and misd the Kruger. Every time that I go back to SA for a visit, I spend time in Kruger. As Tania stated, Linda’s blog takes me back to Kruger.

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