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Tag archives for Botswana

Going Live with “Looking for Life”

Last week, I was in Washington DC for the Pre-Departure Orientation of the next round of Fulbright-National Geographic Fellows. During my visit, I gave a presentation about my time in Botswana and the progress on LOOKING FOR LIFE, my short documentary. In addition to speaking and showing images from my fellowship, I screened a two-minute…

Editing Begins!

For the past several weeks, I’ve been living in New Xade without internet access, so I haven’t been able to update my blog. But in the relative quiet of village life, I’ve made the important transition into postproduction. Kebabonye, my field producer and translator, and I have been working nonstop on the edit – watching…

Canoeing with Elephants

As good as it gets, an afternoon in Botswana canoeing with National Geographic filmmakers & Explorers in Residence, Dereck and Beverly Joubert, as elephants come to the river to drink. Roger Miller sang, “You Can’t Roller Skate in a Buffalo Herd”, but as I found out can go canoeing in a buffalo herd and an…

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #23

“Life in us is like the water in a river.” Henry David Thoreau The Okavango is the beating heart of Africa, home to an estimated 50% of the world’s elephants, most of the world’s hippo, and crucial populations of many other keystone species. There is no wilder place on earth: this is the Africa of…

“We Are People with Hopes. We Are People with Dreams.”

In one of my first blog posts, I introduced Ketelelo, a young San man who received a government scholarship to attend pre-university classes at Maru-a-Pula, the top senior secondary school in Botswana. Ketelelo grew up in New Xade and was raised by his grandmother. His parents died soon after his birth, and growing up alone…

Breakdown in the Kalahari

Mosodi shut the hood of the truck. “It’s the gearbox.” Earlier that morning, we had departed New Xade for another round of filming in Metsiamanong in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Shortly after passing the border gate into the reserve, the engine of our truck started making a loud clacking noise. Now, it wouldn’t even…

“Beyond Boundaries” Into The Wilderness

INK Talks is an inspirational conference platform committed to spreading disruptive ideas and inspiring stories from the most unexpected sources. At INK 2014, the speakers were asked to describe why and how they were going “beyond boundaries” in their own work and daily lives… Please watch and share this INK talk: https://youtu.be/Z5RLTzya0v8

Why Develop a Rapport?

In my last post, I mentioned being able to develop a rapport with the New Xade community. What does that mean? What does it look like? And why is it so important? Imagine someone – a foreigner speaking a foreign language no less – shows up at your home with a giant camera and says…

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #22

“As human beings, our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world – that is the myth of the atomic age – as in being able to remake ourselves.” Mahatma Gandhi Earlier this month many of us, delighting in the tradition of fresh starts, aligned the 1st of January with change in…

Tumelo and the Central Kalahari Game Reserve

Sorry for the shortage of posts for the past month and a half. I have been living in New Xade without internet access and even made a trip to Metsiamanong in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve (CKGR), where there are no amenities – not even a borehole for water. It has been an interesting time,…

December 7, 2014: Return “Kidnapped” Animals to the Wild, Save the World’s Big Cats and More

This week on National Geographic Weekend, join host Boyd Matson and his guests as they climb El Capitan with young children, stop the kidnapping of Brazil’s wildlife, save lions by saving livestock, lift a 35-ton stone with prehistoric technology, work to save the last 3,000 wild tigers, visit some of the last nomadic tribes, bottle feed a baby cheetah, and clean up hazardous waste.

New Xade: A Convergence of the Traditional and Modern

Progress continues smoothly here in Botswana. Within the first two weeks of arriving, I picked up my official research permit from the Office of the President. With that in hand, I met the principal of Maru-a-Pula and got the go-ahead to film on campus with Ketelelo. I’ve already had a couple of shoots with Ketelelo…

Arrival in Botswana: Elections, Friends, and a Used Car

Dumêlang borra le bomma! That’s greetings in Setswana, the national language of Botswana. After a 7-hour flight across the Atlantic, an 11-hour layover in England, and an 11-hour flight to South Africa, I boarded a small twin-engine prop plane for my final flight to Botswana. My equipment backpack was too large for the overhead bin,…

Daniel Koehler: Examining the Impact of Resettling Botswana’s San

In focusing on San identity and membership in the modern southern African state of Botswana, my film will ask many important questions. What aspects of traditional life are readily adaptable to a more settled lifestyle? What are the main areas of intergenerational agreement in regard to who the San are and who they would like to become, and how do these issues play out in everyday life? How is San identity tied up in political mobilization, and how can government policy support that identity in an increasingly globalized world?

Top 25 Photographs from the Wilderness #21

“The question is not what you look at, but what you see.” Henry David Thoreau A good friend once told me that wildlife photography makes him sad. He explained that when he sees images of the wild creatures and unspoiled places his heart aches too deeply at the thought of what he perceives to be…