Monday, February 26, 2001

Masai Mara, Kenya II

Three cheetah wait in the shadows, watching as a small herd of Thomson’s Gazelle wander closer, oblivious. Stalking in the tall grass, the mother leads her cubs closer. They’re nearly in striking range when another herd crests the hill and bears down without mercy.

No fewer than 13 safari vans race hellbent across the savanna, alerted to the spectacle. The vans and their chattering, laughing cargo surround the cheetahs, spoiling the hunt. Winding through the vans, the cheetah still try to sprint after the scattering gazelle herd.

They give up. Hungry and desperately panting, they slowly limp back to the shade to gather their strength, waiting for another chance.

Show over, the legions depart, in search of another spoon-fed thrill.

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