Scorpion sting didn’t transform me into a scorpion but made me a Field Guide!

The day has finally arrived the big exam! our pracitcal assessment. Which means a 3 hour game drive and I have to be the guide! We got almost 3 months prepared for this and now was the day we could show and tell what we have learned so far. Well as always I had first to overome some obstacles. It wouldn’t be my life if I didn’t have to overcome first another mountain before I can climb the next one. This time my present arrived thankfully a few days early.

 

My astro-sign is scoprio – and I am pretty proud of it. (And yes I believe sometimes a little bit in astrology and signs – let’s connect on Co-Star 😉 ) And I love for that reason as well the animal scoprion. What I had to find out is.. I don’t like a sting of a scorpion at aaaaaaaaaaallll. Yes and honestly, I am sorry I don’t even have a cool story to tell how I had to fight a lion and had to jump up a tree and facing there a Leopard just to jump to the next tree and there Fighting off a scoprion. No no – my story is more like: Well I got up in the morning, went to my bag took out my pants – and päääng there it was – a sting I have never ever felt before, followed by pain and 100 000 needles pushing into my arm… You can divide Scorpions into 2 groups: Scorpionidae and Buthidae… Scorpionidae has big pinchers and more or less thin tail. Because it has ist big pinchers it doesn’t Need as much or strong venom in its tail. The other Family is the BUthidae. Small pinchers, thick and big trail and yes correct it has a lot more or stronger venom in its tail 🙂 So I let you figure out the sorpcion that stung me to which Family it belongs…

I was lucky that I had no allergic reaction and so I was just in pain for the next few days, my arm feeling numb, my thumb where I got stung hurting a lot when just the slightest change of temperature was happening. Yes and my exam just around the corner…

I prepared as good as possible but I also Kind of felt ready for it and was Looking Forward to Finally show my Guiding Skills 🙂 We had to prepare a route, prepare a Little bit about what topics we could and want to talk, prepare the cars (wash them, check them and put all the gear in it), prepare our bags that we are taking with us, prepare the briefings… Just everything that you would experience when you imagine going on a safari 🙂 Of course I had to abandon my planned route after 10min. But I passed! 🙂 Wuhupp!

ARH – Advanced Rifle Handling

Next up – Rifle Handling – the Thing I was most afraid of. If you ask my Friends… no one can imagine me with a gun… not Because I couldn’t handle it or so… but Because I hate guns and can’t imagine ever to shoot at an animal… Also former students Always said it is the hardest exam of all… Well I was Ready and despite my disgust about guns Looking Forward to shoot some Targets… We started shooting and – of course it is fun, if you don’t think about what it really is about. But it also was very difficult. The rifle itself is about 4-5kg heavy… which made the aiming not easier… I am going to tell you a secret.. I trained my arms for that… you want to know how? haha by sneaking away, getting to a place no one could see me, picking up a stone and just holding it… how stupid did I probably look haha just holding a stone for minutes… but honestly… I don’t think it made a difference. The difficult Thing was not to just aim but to shoot in time… THe reason why we have to learn how to shoot, is if you are with guests in the bush and you are facing a situation where the animal is charging you and as a very last result to Keep your guests safe you have to shoot… so this means, we had to be able to load and shoot in a very short time and train a lot to get the muscle memory… it is a matter of seconds… Because as a guide you are also a conservationist and you don’t want ever to shoot an animal.. so you will Always give the animal enough time and space to stop its charge…

Afer 1 week of shooting and exam days and a hurting shoulder we had our ARH and were Ready for our Trails GUide in January. BUt first… I was on my way home to Switzerland!

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