(Benjamin mounted his Nissan truck and led us about 7 miles to what is to become our base camp.)
The ranch entrance is only about 5 minutes from the petrol station, but it takes about 30 minutes to make our way slowly through the very ‘uncleared’ path to the area of the camp mentioned by Benjamin. He referred to this spot as the ranchers’ “homestead”. It is obvious that no one has called this home for a long time. However, he is right about the water and electricity. I park the camper where we can hook-up to both. I’m standing outside the motor home connecting the water hose, Makali is helping Benjamin get his stuff from his truck. He then ‘unhooks’ my Rover from the trailer hitch. I hear the wind quietly moving the tall golden grass. I hear the calm silence of the afternoon. I can smell that there is a water hole nearby, but instead of animal smells, there is a pleasant odor of lilacs in the air. Almost heaven, and almost forgetting that approximately 10 – 15 people have been killed in the last 4 to 5 days. All within a 1/2 to 3 miles from where I’m standing. The sound of a breaking tree branch hurls me back into reality.