A DAY WITH
In the eastern reaches of Namibia the San culture is slowly being eroded away. Moved from their lands as farming and National Parks grew the San found their room for roaming being swallowed. Forced into areas they would have only used seasonally, they found themselves trapped. Slowly the culture started to die. Alcoholism, crime and poverty followed, until now.
Hope and pride is returning with the introduction of the San living museums.
Visitors can contribute to preserving the San culture by visiting these sites. The villagers are given purpose and ancient teachings are passed down through family lines. These teachings preserve one of the worlds most adaptable cultures, whilst showing visitors how resourceful humans can actually be.
The San are more than happy to take visitors on hunting expeditions as these activities are usually off limits due to the conservancy guidelines
A lack of poison for their arrow tips and the scarce wildlife means this is no more than a hunting display. The gathering side of things are a little different though, there are no regulations against gathering seeds, berries & ostrich egg shells.
The shell is broken down and drilled into as the women make necklaces for sale to visitors. The men set about making a fire to soften the collected roots with.
With a fire started it is time to relax. The roots will be heated slowly so there is a lot of time for other activities
Ancient dances duplicating successful hunts and respected animals flow forth. The clapping beat grows as does the enthusiasm with in the group. Soon everybody is involved.
The dancing continues well into the night. As I lay down into my tent I can still hear these ancient rhythms serenading the night as it has for centuries.
If you would like to join me in Namibia in May 2016 to photograph Namibia's various cultures, wildlife and landscapes, please see: www.benmcraephotography.com for more details. This 14 day trip is limited to 6 photographers.
Join me in May 2016 and uncover your own Namibian Photographic Story.
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