Ever been chased by a vulture? This is what happened to me…
It’d been a long day for the group. I was at the back of the truck trying to nap on my rucksack 14 days into a cross-road adventure in Botswana.
We’d been getting up at 5am each day, moving to another location, setting camp, going to see things before coming back and eating around 9pm.
Those are some long days.
And the roads in Botswana are not the greatest!
Trying to sleep was like lying on a bouncy castle made of rocks.
I felt the truck slow down and come to a halt.
A trigger in my brain went off as I knew something was about to happen.
Sitting up, I saw hundreds of vultures by the side of the road.
Now if you’ve never seen a vulture, they’re big. Like seriously big. The average size is just over one meter, but they can get as big as two meters.
And they stare at you like the devil. You kinda feel that if you turn your back they may move from the dead donkey they’re eating to you.
There are hundreds of these vultures by the side of the road. We get told explicitly not to go close to them, stay near the truck.
Everyone’s taking their photos and getting back on the truck when we realise this German dude, the guy who’s always super-excited about everything, was nearly in the middle of the group of them crouching down.
What the f**k are you doing.
Well I knew what he was doing. He was a photographer and he was trying to get a shot that nobody else had got. Nobody else had got the shot because… it was mentally dangerous.
I got out the truck with the guide, who gave me some quick instructions.
The instructions were kinda like… you distract them that side, I’ll distract them this side. Then run like hell to the truck and we’ll drive as fast as humanly possible.
Creeping round to the other side of the group of vultures, I got the nod and began shouting.
Unless you’ve experienced being next to nearly a hundred birds that look like they’re on a day trip from hell, then you won’t know the fear that shook through me as they all turned to look.
My brain slowed down until I heard the guide shouting run.
And boy did I run. I’ve never run faster in my life. The truck was revving, the guide was nearly there and I was running like my life depended on it.
Which it kinda did.
The second my foot got onto the step of the truck it screeched off. Sitting down, I took a moment to look behind me to see the birds circling away from us and the distance increasing.
Thank god for that.
Where was that crazy asshole.
Sitting opposite me it turned out, with a massive grin on his face. He handed me his camera.
God damn it… he’d gotten the picture.
He’d given everything, and kinda made a couple of us give everything, to get the picture he wanted.
And I appreciated that. I was pissed off, but I understood where he was coming from.
Without realising, that was the first lesson that propelled me to where I am today. If you want to achieve something, you’ve got to give everything to get it.
Now I’m not suggesting you go out and get chased by a pack of vultures. In fact quite the opposite, that would be pretty stoopid.
What I am suggesting is, you ask yourself if you’re giving everything you can to achieve what you want. Because until you do, you won’t get there.
All the best,