Our Unicorn 10-29-2010

Since the lost city we have been on the hunt for our unicorn: the Bengal Tiger. We first visited Kanha national park and though the jungle was astounding with peacocks, monkeys, parakeets and deer there was no Tiger. We made our way to Bandhavgarh, a park that was guaranteed to see Tigers. We arrived to find the zone of the park with tigers to be booked out for weeks. Eric and I set out for lunch disappointed and Michael and Mel set out to walk away their pain. As Eric and I sat down to a delicious plate of coconut stuffed egg plant we saw Michael and Mel peel into the parking lot in a “gypsy” jeep, they quickly grabbed us from our incredible food without even letting us pay and threw us into the jeep. They had some how gotten us a VIP spot reserved for government officials and it started in five minutes. We arrived in the park with anticipation pumping our blood fast through our veins, the park was one of the most beautiful forests we had ever been in and we felt sure that a Tiger was coming. Yet the evening passed and no Tiger. Our last opportunity was this morning and we would be in a zone with few tigers ever seen. We awoke at 4 in the morning with little hope. The gypsy jeep picked us up and it was freezing, we get to the office to finish out our paper work (an infinite abyss in India that will be the end of the forest they protect) as we wait in the dark and cold Mel shows up and informs us that we got a VIP pass for the zone with the most sightings a second time! Hope began to warm our bodies as we set out. An hour later we sat in silence listening for the Langur’s warning calls of a nearby Tiger…. nothing , we drive towards a heard of deer and begin to take pictures out of boredom. In the distance we heard the scream of the same type of deer often made in the presence of a Tiger and our driver flew into action in seconds we were turned around and speeding through the jungle, we arrived in the plain and the herd of deer were all alert, across the plain a huge male Bengal Tiger casually crossed the field and everything stood at attention, eventually he made his way back into the forest leaving us stunned with excitement. A true Bengal Tiger walking in his forest with all authority the image will never leave my mind.  As we were recovering a jeep drove by and informed us that there were two cubs near the entrance of the park. The jeep again flew into action and stopped us right in front of two cubs resting on a rock, a male and female one year old yet still enormous. We couldn’t believe it, no one has seen three tigers in one day it is unheard of, yet there they were beautiful orange white and black against deep forest green. We got our unicorn…
This Photo was taken by our South  African friend Ben who joined us on the safari, because of a ranger dispute we only had a few moments with the tigers before we were rushed off. Ben captured the best shot possible for the situation.

3 thoughts on “Our Unicorn 10-29-2010

  1. I’m so happy for you, and envious. Sitting at my computer in my little work cubicle in Phoenix, I was transported into your adventure. The picture is beautiful, and yes, while it only captures a fleeting moment, you have told the story so well that the picture is a reminder of the whole thing. How varied,how breathtaking are God’s wonders! Praying for you all….I am a member at Eastside Baptist Church where Mel’s Dad is pastor.

  2. Lions, TIGERS and Bears, Oh My! God is good.
    What a blessing!
    Thanks for sharing your journey. I shared your blog is Church Sunday morning. Keep it coming.
    Papa Bear

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