Nothing Going On

Or what happens when there is "nothing going on"

Many years ago I remember seeing a short documentary made by a young man called Alan Root.

It was called “Nothing Going On” It was a delightful account of how it was at most Safari Lodges then.


Come early afternoon, after a sumptuous Lunch we see the guests falling asleep on the verandah of the Kilaguni Safari Lodge at Tsavo National Park… The big game they have come to see has equally retreated to rest in hidden shady spots during the heat of the day.

African Chameleon

And then Alan’s camera discovers all the other creatures missed by most tourists.

The industrious weaver birds now venture closer collecting scraps and working on their nests.

Flamboyant lizards sunning themselves, the dung beetle collecting what he was called after.

Kaleidoscopic critters in the sand everywhere going about their chores, while the striking superb starlings are hopping around cleaning up crumbs left behind by the now dozing and unaware ‘wildlife enthusiasts’. The film ends with yawns and other signs of wakening humanity. Some waterbuck are appearing back at the waterhole, followed by a Giraffe. Picture-book Africa is once again open for business.

Alan Root went on to become a famous wildlife film producer.

African beetle

Now that sophisticated camera equipment is available to most of us, you can have a ball with a micro lens, or letting some exotic bug fill the frame of your 200mm lens.

Let those others at the top of the food chain rest in their innocent but ignorant slumber. Some of your best time on Safari can be had watching those fascinating creatures at the bottom.

And when the curtain opens for yet another slide show of the big five you will forever cherish your memories of when there was "nothing going on."

Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy