It was Autumn a few months ago. Pastel hues of brown and yellow fell to the ground. The trees were soon bare skeletons and the bushveld became a dry, cold place. It was only the toughest who survived this season. There was heavy competition for sparse patches of food and the journeys to find water were littered with predators taking advantage of their prey’s thirst.
To everything though, there is a season. Facing these challenges head-on, allows growth for the future when the struggles of yesterday don’t seem quite as bad. The cold mornings soon turned to sparkling dew drops. Now, the middays grow hot, and the humidity condenses the air into fluffy, dark rain clouds. The bushveld has experienced this cycle countless times before. In anticipation of the thirst quenching release of summer rains, green leaves start sprouting and diaphanous flowers bloom.
When the rains do come, they start with a floating breeze across a bruised sky. The gentle wind glides through the dry cracks in nature and our lives. Soothing and calm, the crisp smell of rain promises renewal. The first drops thrust down in dusty exhibitions. The thunderclaps announce the coming of a great storm, resonating off the cowering bush below.
For a moment, there is an eerie silence…Nature draws in her final breath before the thunder howls her rage. She wants to release her tears, her anger, her frustration. She is pained at the damage she perceives all around. But then, before it seems she will devour us with her wind and lightning, she releases her unconditional love. The rain begins to fall onto the land below. Water flows.
It is accepted gratefully by trees, roots and animals reveling in the soothing sweep of life.
In this hard bushveld, a collective union is briefly found. There is no competition, no territories, no worries or instinct. There is only absorption of African rain.
Filmed, Written and Photographed by: Rich Laburn