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Digital Subscriptions > Psychologies > No. 154 > Lionheart

Lionheart

Award-winning nature writer Jini Reddy communes with animals and nature in a Spiritual corner of South Africa

well travelled

Too excited to sleep on my first morning at Camp Unicorn, I rise early from my rondavel and wander along the dirt track. As I turn a corner, I come upon a family of vervet monkeys, gentle and wide-eyed. Around another, I nearly collide with a small, toeecoloured antelope with big, silky ears – later, I learn it is a female nyala. I watch until she bounds o in a graceful, soundless leap, over a cluster of bright pink bougainvillea. It’s all so fantastically removed from the English winter I’ve left behind, and yet South Africa is my parents’ homeland – the country they left so many years ago, at a time when apartheid rule blighted everything. Theirs is a land I’ve only occasionally returned to, with mixed feelings, knowing the hardships they faced.

And yet, when I have made the journey, the connection I’ve felt is undeniably deep and elemental and takes me by surprise. Lost in thought, it’s a few moments before I spot the enormous grey hide of an animal beyond the camp fence. The shape moves – and fleetingly I’m gazing into the eyes of an eland, a giant antelope with horns that twist and spiral magnificently.

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About Psychologies

What happens when you don’t like what you see in the world? Our dossier gives you the low-down on what you can do to step up and make the world a better place - be it making small changes in your community to founding a charity that will make a massive impact on the world. We also invite you to lighten up and have some fun this month. Katy Regan signs up to a comedy improvisation workshop – with surprising results. Suzy Bashford channels her inner punk and delights in swearing more and caring less what other people think. Still in need of some laughs? Meet Emma Stroud, Psychologies ‘clown in residence’, who must be the first person to conduct a TED talk dressed as a banana. It’s going to be an interesting month!

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