Chapter 11: Two geckos in the bush are better than one in the hand

Photo credit: wo de shijie on VisualHunt / CC BY-NC-ND

As mentioned in a previous story, we tend to get a lot of visitors. This can be great fun. Just recently family from Gibraltar came to visit. Visitors are interested in our country just as much as we are interested in theirs.

Sometimes our visitors will also bring friends from other countries with them. Then we end up talking about France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Germany and the USA.

Not all of our visitors are international. Our South African friends and family also pop in for frequent visits. Most of the time we welcome this, although it does get a bit tiring. Back in the day, there was one weekend in April we did not have company at our house. The rest of that month was packed with various people coming for a visit.

However, my parents love socialising with these guests and, if you don’t mind me saying, they have excellent hospitality skills. They will always go the extra mile for these people to not only make sure they have a great stay, but also get the most out of the Kruger.

Obviously when friends come out, we will to share a lot of stories like the ones you read here. This tend to make them a bit skeptical and usually a bit giddy. We usually need to put in a full disclaimer that they had no need to fear. The animals will do no harm. Or rather that the possibility is very rare.

While we were staying in Satara, there was a weekend when very good friends of Welkom came to visit us. One of the ladies, Coreen, was scared of literally everything that moved and breathed. However, it was the creepy crawlies that freaked her out the most.

Everywhere she went someone had to walk with her, being her extra pair of eyes for anything with six to eight legs, things that are slimy and things that slither.

I know, I know, you are thinking why would this person come to a place like Kruger then?

Just outside of Satara there is a small cottage where staff can book in their guests. My parents thought it would be a treat for them while also escaping an overly crowded house. So, we had them settled in the cottage.

We had a braai and great fun teasing Coreen about all the bugs and spiders that she could encounter. The other eight people kept on laughing and mocking her. She hated it.

We said goodnight and went home.

The next morning as we joined the group again, we could sense something was up. There were whispers and giggles amongst them, however Coreen was never part of any of it. As soon as she would enter a room the rest of her family would go quiet. They kept trying to tell us the story, but we had no chance of doing so with her lurking around.

After a while when she finally was not close by, someone spilled the beans.

When they woke up this morning, one of them saw something odd. Coreen was still sleeping while in her hand there was a tiny tail of something, hanging out. When they went closer to investigate, they saw a gecko in her hand. This little guy decided to pick her hand as a little hammock to spend the night.

Being full of the giggles everyone woke up and saw the gecko in Coreen’s hand. However, they knew if she had to wake up that the little guy would die. Weather it was from her hysterical shrieks or her death clutching hands. They also knew that if she discovered the gecko in her hand, she would make them all pack up immediately and leave for home.

Coreen’s sister, Marisa, took a photograph as evidence. Then without her waking up, they helped the gecko to safety.

Coreen spend the trip oblivious of the gecko’s shenanigans. Only when they returned home, they showed her the picture. I think Coreen has only visited us once again since and it took her forever to come around.

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