A week in politics is more than a long time, sometimes: it can mark the beginning or the end of an era. It is hard to believe that it was just this time last week that the man who sold his country, former president Jacob Zuma, was flatly refusing to step down from office. By Friday, in the State of the Nation address, a new man, President Cyril Ramaphosa, was resetting the tone for the nation, and Zuma was toast. Those who had depended on Zuma’s favours, who had enabled his vices, who had grown fat and arrogant along with […]
We have a new President. Cyril Ramaphosa elected by Parliament today. A new tone in his remarks to the House of dignity, humility, respect and commitment. And not a word about his predecessor. Needless to say, I watched his election and stood and applauded, along with millions of South Africans.
Wow! Fabulous! The Obamas show the world what really is great about America (and forget about the little orange-faced turd). via The Obamas’ portraits are not what you’d expect and that’s why they’re great – The Washington Post
Bergman-esque in its intensity, the South African film Inxeba – The Wound – has rightly won praise and awards around the world, along with the usual quota, for a film that speaks openly, and painfully, about homosexuality, masculinity, homophobia and ‘traditional culture’ in an African community, of threats and vitriol. In Cape Town, supposedly a bastion of the arts and enlightenment, the film was withdrawn by distributors Ster Kinekor, in an act of cowardice and betrayal. All of which is to say, there is a moral imperative to see it, and a duty to support the actors and director. But […]
The country has been busy these last days and weeks with the unedifying spectacle of Jacob Zuma’s slow prying loose from the carcase of the state he has so wounded and savaged – there will be a collective sigh of relief once he has gone, and not much sympathy, either, when he is finally hauled before the Commission of Enquiry into state capture, and hopefully, in due course, before the courts. Meanwhile the new man, Ramaphosa, has already begun to clean house, sweeping aside the old, corrupt Board at Eskom, wakening the long-dormant National Prosecuting Authority from its long slumber, […]
Photographing rhino, in my amateur experience, can be a challenge. Mostly the problem is finding them in the first place, and when you do see them they tend to be just standing around, galumphing great hulks, or snoozing in the shade of a tree, where the light is awful. If you’re a pro, you wait for the right moment – and waiting can mean a long, long time, before something interesting happens. When you’re not a pro, just someone like me, you’re either driving, with limited time at your disposal, or you’re on a game drive, which means someone else […]
As I have mentioned, there are crocs enough in the St Lucia Wetlands to form a walkway across the water, Crocodile Dundee-style, should anyone want to make so bold. Or be so foolish. But these images are not from the wild, they are from the Crocodile Centre located in the reserve, instead. We were lucky enough to come across one female, in a state of suspension, trance-like, humped over a shallow hole she had dredged in the sand, and watch as her body periodically arched, while she dropped into the hole one soft, glistening crocodile egg after another.
One of the things about St Lucia that makes things a little tricky for the photographer is the vegetation – dense, lush, green, all too often in the way of a clear shot, especially for the traveling amateur or tourist who does not have the luxury of lying in wait, sometimes for days or weeks, to make that definitive image. These images are definitely ‘seconds’, not the first quality – but I share them because of the moments they capture: a giraffe, with an ox-pecker or tick bird over one eye, a clutch of zebra resting on one another’s rumps, […]
This young kudu bull, posing beside a tree in the St Lucia Marine Park, seemed almost coquettish as he looked at me looking at him through the lens of my camera. [In the original version of this post I made the embarrassing error of referring to the bull as female – I fear the coquettishness had me tied up in knots!]