things we lost in the swamp...

In retrospect I suppose it was a mistake to get out of the boat.

Our guide warned me not to. What did he know? The afternoon was warm and the river looked cool and I was in the mood for adventure. So I hopped out and splashed into the Chobe and waded away before anyone could stop me.

Soon I was separated from my companions. It was peaceful at first, a pure bliss to be out on my own in the African river. And so exciting! The rush and flow of fluid wildness swept me away. By the time I sensed the dangers it was too late.

My encounter with the crocodile was brief. I struggled and fought hard. But I did not win. If you have ever fought a crocodile bare-handed, you will know what I mean. I lost a lot of blood, and my left arm below the elbow.

These days I try to be philosophical about it. What I think is, to take something of value from Africa, Africa must take something of value from you.

Chobe River, Botswana, April 2008.

Rolleiflex T, Neopan 400.