Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Three little Cheetahs

It was last Sunday that I was asked to attend a small meeting with my trainees in a remote station regarding their safety courses. The time being a bit late for me to sum up my reports, I opted for a shortcut road, right through the woods. The roads being African , I drove slowly through the pot holes with sharp turn arounds. My Prado is old enough to send as scrap, has managed to escape two attempts by the head quarters to be sent for dismantling as scrap.
I have trusted it with my life on rainy seasons and while driving off the road. Oh! God it rattles like an old horse cart; the wind shield have cracks and the glass had scratches all over from the ancient wiper.
I wanted some water to pour on the front glasses to clear the thick dust which was affecting my view. The river being far away, I was looking for shepherd's huts where I know that our company provided potable water in old barrels.
I found two barrels beside the road from far away and slowed down; double parked beside a big tree. I found a two litre, used plastic bottle from the rear seats to fetch water and walked to the barrels.
Nearer to the barrels, I thought I saw a moment behind the water drums and alarms went up all over my brain as it was reported that cheetahs were seen romping that area recently.

I managed a crouched position on self defence…African style, with the hairs on the nape of my neck on full alert like a dog just before fight.
I resisted with much effort an urge to run for my life, as I was not sure if the Cheetah was injured and would chase me if I run. I managed to get hold of a large enough stone which I held in my right hand in attack position.
No movement at all. I peered again and now I saw it…a small black head, a boy's head and then another one smaller… and the last one much smaller than all.
Three small male shepherd kids…scared to death and scared to run too.
They peered at me, about to cry... seeing me in my crouched position with a stone in my hand.
I eased myself and managed a smile and the kids started to run. I called them in Arabic and told them to stop.
Well they stopped, not with the pleasure of seeing me but they were simply scared.

They don’t seem to be at ease and I showed them the water bottle that was still held in my left hand and said ‘moyya’ (meaning, water in Arabic).
They were not looking at my left hand; they were looking at my right hand which still held the stone in defensive position. I threw the stone away and smiled foolishly, which seem to relax them a bit.
I said ‘moyya’ again pointing at the bottle and I got a response. The eldest boy pointed at the barrel and I moved forward with the smiling face, as I suspected that the kids may shriek that will bring all the armed shepherds around that area.
They may not get time to listen to me. LOL

I dipped my bottle inside the drum and I heard the soft sound from the older ‘moyya mo mal sharab’ (meaning that water is not for drinking). I acknowledged with a shake of head.
When the water was full I turned around to them and asked if I can take a picture. From their faces, I think they did not understand what I was asking. I walked to my Prado and returned with a camera.
I asked them to smile but they were still scared and moved closer to each other but I got what I wanted. A picture of my three little unsmiling cheetahs.


Dotm said...

Glad it wasn`t a cheetah. I can understand those little ones being scared of you with you holding that stone. Bet they will remember you the next time they ever see you. Sounds like your vehicle has been thru some rough times.

jac said...

I am still wondering about what might have happened if they cried out and brought all the armed shepherds.
I am sure that they will remember me if they see me again.

Yeah, my Prado has done a bit of running but still I trust it off the road, than the new Toyoto pickup provided nowadays.

Lorna said...

It's hard to imagine three such little boys all by themselves. In Canada, they'd be in day care or at school. Yikes!

Mindinside said...

Thanks for sharing

SCHOOL BAG said...

You could not found their parents near by? I think you are lucky..

One day one of my african friend showed me a tiger, a black tiger running very fast, I never seen these small tiger b4. But last I realize that, that was a cat fall down in a crude oil pit...


jac said...

They are hapless little shepherd kids who can't go to school because they are like gypsies.

They move around wuth their sheep. Their school is the wilderness, the grass land, as they move along where ever the grass grow.

jac said...

I have always done more than that. LOL

Keep coming and reading, plz.

jac said...

School bag
I know what will happen if their grown ups where some where near the location.LOL.

OMG, I believe you about that tiger, but I feel that it is time that you test your reading glasses again, or else, if and when you look at a normal beautiful female...you will be scared to death, intantly

You will see her like a "Gulliver in Lilliput".

Check these URL below.LOL


aklanta said...

Felt like watching a Hindi movie, slowly building up suspense, there's the climes to be followed by the anti-climex when you feel relaxed. Well done!

boo said...

thats a great pic of your little cheetahs

jac said...

Welcome back after a long break.

If I dont write like your Hindi movie style, people will not read that post. LOL
I have to keep you reading till the end, man ! :)

I know that I am not a prose fellow but I hope that it is a compliment.

jac said...


Yes, the three small Cheetahs that I couldn't booooo away.

pink said...

Amazing what you come across.The boys are really cute as well.

jac said...

I don't bring things across, it comes to me and I share it with you.
Fair enough I hope ?

Aren't they cute ?

sophie said...

they r cute...
i like 'em

November Rain said...

they are adorable... I am sure you felt bad for scaring them...

i dont know anything aboutcheetahs but I know when growing up around Florida near heavy woods we were told not to run because its like waving a red flag to a bull for them

if you run they are more apt to chase

of course my NatAmeri ancestors said that the cougar was always curious of men and it is true unlike any other large cat a cougar will follow men and sleep near areas populated bby men

not that you see many anymore the Florida Panther is almost extinct now
but when I was a little girl there were 1-2 in the woods left not many

anyhow I suppose it would be scary to come accross a chetah although be carefull these 3 cheetahs might steal your heart LOL :P

they are cute

jac said...


Look at them, how cute they are. Who will not love them.

jac said...

Its true that Cheetahs are one the coolest creatures of the wild, pretty curious about human too.

One of the things I learned is that fear is the key.
Be it tiger or cheetah, it looks at you straight to scare you, like they look at small animals and if you are scared, we are at their mercy. Cheetahs are considered harmless unless injured.

We never get time to check if they are injured or not when a cheetah is in front of you, Would we ? Nor can we ask them politely if they are injured. LOL

fritz said...

so c-u-t-e! maybe their parents are just watching you from a distance? studying your every move ;) hehehe

Nan said...

They look so sweet and innocent.

gem said...

I see a cute butterfly
is it a lover or a spy?

jac said...

They don't crawl and peep as you say.

They are like barberians sometimes because of their lack of education and they have sharp knives and guns too for protection from animals.
haha...for a short period I will be their animal; that is all. LOL

jac said...


They are in fact.

jac said...

Can't place it in any categoery; depends on the gender of it. LOL

It can be both, which makes more sense.

SCHOOL BAG said...

OMG, I believe you about that tiger, but I feel that it is time that you test your reading glasses again, or else, if and when you look at a normal beautiful female...you will be scared to death, intantly

You will see her like a "Gulliver in Lilliput".
I am using PAL ZILERI spectcles, may be u heard about and also I can read ur blog(also fully black)lol.. so dont b doubt on my glasses again!!!
About normal beautiful female is not a better comparison for my comment as there is a story - In one counrty they were conducting Lion's show (like Body shows), all Lions from different countries arrived to attend the show, when a small Lion get in to the stage the organisers said "Stop this is Lion show not Cat show" then the little Lion said "I am Lion not Cat but you remember I am from Somalia"

An apple fall down Newton's head and he discovered Force of gravity, If that was a coconut who will discover Force of gravity.???
ha ha

jac said...

school bag
That is lovely joke about newton.

BTW :- 'Pal Zilari' is a famous brand name for clothes, who also make designer sunglasses, perfumes and ties. But they are not opticians.

Thanks for those visits, come again.

SCHOOL BAG said...

Pil Zilari had few genious opticians they may not reached in Nigeria yet!!!Wait couple of years!!!

Jac I am looking forward to your next article....r u busy?


jac said...

Thanks for waiting for my next post.
I post every 3rd day, meaning that my post will be tomorrow.

Feel free to check the following on 'Pal Zileri' ;))


November Rain said...

yeah its like snakes... the most poisonous snake is in Florida its called a coral snake... and we have a snake that is harmless that looks similar they teach you this saying

red on black friend of jack
red on yellow beware fellow

because that is the only way to tell them apaprt but who wants to get that close right :P so I understand :)

Jay said...

It's a sad day when you cut such a frightening figure.

Dotm said...

Jac, how about a picture of your Prado so we can see what you are driving around in. Is it also made for off-road driving? Is prado an African word for the vehicle? Hearing a new word got me curious. :):)

jac said...

Wonderful words.

You bring me some thing new, every time you are here.

jac said...

miss jay

Say it again, miss!

Thanks for coming.

jac said...

I will happily post a pic of my Prado. The poor fella deserve to be exposed a bit

It is actually "Toyota Prado"...a cruiser.

Mz Rachel said...

The boys look precious.

I loved this story!!! I just wish I knew where to send the youngest some clothes. My two boys have more than enough to share.

jac said...

I will take care of it for you...today.

I can understand your kindness and you made my day with those words.

By this time when you read this, Consider it done on your behalf.


sAP said...

Can imagine u with a stone in ur hand up against a cheetah! All cats have sensitive noses, so even a stone should be effective.

Talking of sensitivity, I recall an incident once when coming back late from work. A pack of stray dogs ran beside and after my car barking aggressively and making a huge racket on the street.

I was so annoyed, I stopped the car, grabbed a few stones by the roadside and chased them back! Boy, were they surprised!

Dogs are so sensitive all over their body, especially to stone attack! Never had dog trouble since.


sAP said...

dotm, a Toyota Prado is a popular SUV (sports utility vehicle) sold in many continents and one of the best all-terrain-4WDs in the world. http://www.mynrma.com.au/landcruiser-prado-gxl-v6_toyprado.asp

jac, would love a pic of that in here. I've seen parts of it though in some of the previous pictures u posted (lady with a baby).


Mz Rachel said...

Did you really take some shorts to that little boy?

Wow! That is amazing!!!

jac said...

Thanks for the comments about the effectiveness of stones. LOL

Though a stone as an attacking weapon is not an effective against an annoyed cheetah, it was meant as a weapon in self defense, as I was scared to go back to the car and get a tire liver, which would have given me more confidence.

A few of my readers been asking me to publish a pic of my ancient but reliable Prado, I am planning one soon.

No doubt that with your enthusiasm on motor sports, your curiosity is understandable.

jac said...

As promised, I have purchased 3 pairs of new attire for all the three. Yes I have done it !

Thanks for reminding me, one of my basic responsabilities.

Green-Eyed Lady(GEL) said...

It warms my heart what you did for those boys.
Their photo pulls at my heartstrings and I weep seeing them.

jac said...

Be my guest.
I like what I do but I am ashamed that at times people has to remind me about my own responabilities.

Thanks for coming. I would enjoy it more if you do it often.

Chickadee said...

Hmmm, your thoughts and worries over getting attacked on by a cheetah certainly put my experiences with Cheetahs in perspective.

I have only seen Cheetahs in captivity. Our city zoo is one of the leading zoos in the country that is involved in trying to save these wild cats.

I've always been drawn to Cheetahs, especially when I was a little girl...can't say why. But wow...can't imagine fearing for my life because of WILD cheetahs.

Anonymous said...

Those 3 cheetas are the cutest kids I have ever seen! Wish I could just hug them.. Look at their faces.. a million dollar worth expression!