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Africa Inland Mission
August 12, 2017 8:32 pm
Published in: Ministry Life

(I insert this story here a bit earlier because the families of the “shooter” in the story are all to be at AIM Media about now. Maybe they will see it and it will jog their memories!)

It was time to replenish the meat in our refrigerators. Instead of visiting the town market and asking for pieces to be cut from the hanging beef carcasses (which may have been hanging in the open air since yesterday!!), we decided to have a day “off” and go hunting. After all, the good hunting grounds were not all that far away.

So, early in the morning we took off – myself and two other missionary men. We were in a Volkswagen Kombi, the kind that had a large sliding door on the one side. The missionary who wanted to do most of the shooting sat in the door-side seat in the 2nd row.

Government regulations prohibited shooting from a vehicle. The shooter had to be at least 250 paces from the vehicle so the shooter was prepared, when we saw suitable game, to slide the door open and drop out from the slow-moving vehicle. The antelope would usually watch the vehicle moving off and often not notice the shooter creeping up on it.

We noted a group of topi standing a bit out in the plain. It so happened that at the place where the shooter dropped out there was a thicket of bushes. He made his way toward the thicket, naturally thinking that it would help him get closer to the target.

As we moved off in the vehicle, we could see what was on the other side of the thicket. And, there stood a solitary rhino! It was clearly agitated, stomping around, having heard the vehicle and it was prepared for action. And, the shooter was slowly making his way toward that same thicket.

Quickly, we turned the vehicle around and drove back to where the shooter was. He saw us and motioned us to “get out of here!”. We got closer and I was told him to get back into the vehicle.

As he got back into the vehicle we were able to tell him that just on the other side of the thicket there was a huge rhinoceros. And that it was feisty! Without thinking, he said with some agitation, “I didn’t come out here to shoot a rhino”! Only after we drove on with him, so that he could see the back side of the thicket that he had been going to use for cover, did he really understand what we were talking about. And, no doubt, his agitation abated.

So we drove on looking for better hunting ground. But for a long time afterwards he was reminded of his near-rhino experience.

Oh, yes. We did get something for the refrigerators. He got a topi and I bagged an impala. Good meat; good eating; and a more-than-adequate supply which we were able to share with many others.

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