Sunday, September 26, 2010

Hunting with the Bushmen

As I mentioned in my last post, on the last day of our safari in Tanzania, we spent a morning with the Hadzabe Bushmen.

We left our campsite early in the morning, maybe 6 am, and drove down crazy bumpy roads that shouldn't even be considered roads. When we got to the middle of nowhere, we were there. I felt like I was in a National Geographics documentary. This was such an eye opening and humbling experience. We were encouraged to take lots of photos, which I felt a little weird about, and I tried to be as incognito as possible.

Throughout the entire morning our guide was amazing. He told us so much information about the Bushmen's lifestyle, hunting techniques, natural medicines, etc. The first thing we noticed when getting to their camp was the Bushmen's homes, which you can see in the picture below. I can't even imagine...
The Bushmen were very happy on the day we were visiting because they had recently killed some sort of animal and had a ton of food. Here they are cleaning the animal to prepare it for cooking.
Below is the chief who is cutting the meat into pieces, which would either be cooked right then, or hung in the trees and bushes to dry. And that's how they stored their food, which I still cannot quite comprehend.
You can see a bit of meat in the bush in the background, drying out.
The tribe gave us a bit of cooked meat to try, which M thought tasted good, but I had to choke down. It did not taste like chicken.
We learned how to use their bows and arrows and had a bit of a target practice. I was not good at this at all but M wasn't half bad!
After a while we followed the Bushmen into the forest to go hunting. Those dudes were fast! It was a workout keeping up with them! All that could be found were some birds to shoot at, but they had no luck. They did collect some meat they had previously left in a tree and I watched in utter amazement as they cut the meat and wore it on their bodies like a purse.
They showed us how to dig roots up to eat as a source of water, which they're eating in the picture below. I thought the roots sorta tasted like watery raw potatoes.
They also showed us how to make fire using nothing by wood and friction. It took them about 30 seconds to get the fire going, pretty impressive!
Wow, I feel so fortunate to have had this experience. It was intriguing see how these people live entirely off the land and it made me so grateful for all of the luxuries that I have in my life.


  1. Wow, now that was an experience! You're right, it was like living a National Geographic special!

  2. What an incredible life experience... wow!

  3. Wow.... I have to commend you for trying the meat and the watery roots.... not sure I could do that. What a great experience though!! I can't imagine what your next adventure will be.