A hilarious, highly original collection of essays based on the Botswana truism: “only food runs!” With a new introduction and new material from the author
At age 19, Australian-born Allison headed to Africa for challenge and adventure, planning to stay no more than a year; having found work as a safari guide, he's still there some 13 years later. In this fun, fearless memoir, Allison shares his experiences taking "guests" through the African wilderness, trips that often don't go quite as planned-due especially to the unpredictability of the animals around them. Allison is a skilled, funny and vibrant storyteller, dishing arcane bits of wisdom like an expatriate Alligator Hunter: "I understand a little bit of monkey language, and 'kwe' is a sound I listened for. It was an alarm... full blown monkey conniptions were reserved for leopards." A hilarious chapter recounting a troubled thousand mile trek through the Kalahari Desert finds Allison trying to wave down a passing truck in the middle of the night: "I realized that the driver would have seen what looked like a very animated sage bush with pasty white hands growing from it... he'd probably go straight to a witch doctor... and ask if there was a curse on him." Along the way, Allison examines his fellow guides, the struggle with exhaustion, getting lost and the temptation to make frequently visiting animals into pets, as well as some poignant asides on love and death.