The elephant that charged me.During my Peace Corps years in Togo, I lived on the edge of a wildlife preserve called Le Fosse aux lions. Created out of what once had been twelve villages, by 1988 (when I arrived) it was the home of a herd of about forty elephants. My experience with one of … Continue reading Stopping Wildlife Poachers Isn’t Easy and Can’t Be By "Us"
As I've written about the elephant that charged me in 1990 and about the death of the small herd that elephant came from, I couldn't resist posting these, pictures of members of that herd, taken within sight of my house in Tambaong, Togo... where, some months later, that one elephant let me walk away:From Tambaong
For me, the current Iraq fiasco is tied to an incident in northern Togo on August 2, 1990, though through a connection of media and coincidence, nothing more. The two events become a single, sustained note, a “punctum”—as Roland Barthes might have called it—as opposed to the “studium" of our general, fleeting perception. What happened … Continue reading Iraq and the Elephant
Harmattan dust comes down from the Sahara each December, fogging the views of Mt. Bombouaka, to the east, and Mt. Nassiet, to the west, filtering sunlight all through the early months of each new year in the village of Tambaong. When the haze masks their tops, these crests often look like the bottoms of real … Continue reading Dust and Smoke