Heads in the clouds – by Vlou the traveling beagle

A Beagle travels Africa

Do you know, where Cullinan is? You can find diamonds there, well maybe not YOU …Vlou and FinjaSir Thomas Cullinan was a South African diamond magnate, who gave his name to the town next to the mine and to the mine itself, which is situated only half an hour from the capital Pretoria. The biggest diamond ever found had been discovered there at the beginning of the 20th Century and plenty others since, almost as precious, followed years after. Not that diamonds mean a lot to me. But I had a girlfriend in Switzerland named Finja. A beautiful lady, same breed and colour as I. She used to wear a diamond collar – well – maybe that were not real diamonds, but that doesn’t matter. She looked gorgeous! But I wanted to tell you something else …

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA friend invited my humans and me to stay on his private game farm called Windy Brow, only a couple of kilometres away from Cullinan. What awaited me there I will never forget in my entire life! The farm offered space of more than 380 hectares with a wide range of African wildlife. In the middle of the farm was a large mansion tucked away behind tall trees. Just next to it was a white chalked rondavel. This is a house, which is built like the original round houses of the indigenous people in Africa. This one was bigger though with two-stories. It was neatly fitted out with a kitchen, living room and bathroom on the first floor and a bedroom on the second floor. From the second floor I discovered a window just the right height for me to explore the scenic view over the Highveld bush with gently rolling hills on either side of the valley.

– Wow! What’s that!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’d never seen such creatures before. With long, slack legs and a neck leading to a head almost up in the clouds, four beasts were staggering between the trees browsing. I ran down the stairs to the front door to get a closer look.

– Jeeeeesus, what the hell happened to you guys that you almost have your heads in the clouds?

The necks were spectacularly long, but considering how tall the legs together with their body were, they would certainly struggle to get their head to the ground.

  • How can you possibly be able to reach the ground to drink? I asked curiously.

Maybe they understood beagle’ish, because one of the five approached to greet me. She lowered her head slowly by spreading her front legs wide to be able to get down to my level.

– Uuuh, that’s how you do it!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHuge wet gentle brown eyes like round saucers looked at me through the longest eyelashes I’d ever seen. On top of her head peaked two funny horns the shape of gigantic cloves, but hairy.

– Ek is Twiza, die lyd giraffe op Windy Brow, wie is jy?

I was totally flabbergasted. That language was Afrikaans! I could understand it a little bit. So, THESE were giraffes! I thought awestruck; finally I got to know what giraffes were! I’d never imagined such an awesome animal.

– So, your name is Twiza, the lead giraffe, I repeated with a hoarse voice.  I’m Vlou, the traveling Beagle from Switzerland.

The other three giraffes also approached, as they heard us talking. Their fur was tawny with a pattern of dark brown squares, which shimmered reddish in the evening sun. They had hoofs like horses, but split in the middle and their tail carried a fluffy tassel at the end.

– Twiza, suster, kom, wat soek jy met die hond? another Giraffe asked and turned majestically away after examining me.

– Ach, kyk, ek het nie so n’ hontje van te voore gesien nie! Twiza insisted.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAlthough I didn’t understand every word it was clear to me, that only Twiza was interested in me as the other Giraffes walked away. She breathed gently in my face, as I tried not to shake too much on my legs.

– I’m not afraid … I’m not afraid … I’m not afraid, I tried to calm myself.
Come walk with us, I show you our wildlife reserve, Twiza said to me. – I’ll take care of you!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA voice inside of me warned: – Don’t do it, Vlou! You don’t know, what’s out there or if that Giraffe is as nice as she looks.

Another voice said: – Ach come, Vlou! Those eyes can’t lie; just trust Twiza, man! It’s safe enough!

So? Well …,? You might already know, after reading my last adventures. Of course I followed Twiza.

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