Monday, 3 March 2008


It was when we were on our way home from town last night, after dinner together with friends at The Spur. It was already dark. Travelling a good 100km's per hour (approx 62 miles per hour) on the open farm road. Suddenly an enormous (and I mean enormous!) porcupine ran out in front of the bakkie*. Robin did his best to avoid it. But apparently porcupines always chase the light and actually made an about turn in it's tracks and chased after us. Robin jammed on the brakes, and the vehicle skidded off the side of the road, hitting the porcupine in the process.
This morning Robin and I climbed into the bakkie to go and see if the porcupine was still there. I took some pics.

This is the road out to our farm:-

(That's Robin standing on the side of the road,
and see the skidmarks on the road where we
went careening off the road)

Incidentally, South Africans drive on the LEFT side of the road, so we had already
hopped lanes to get out of the porcupine's way, before we started skidding.

Close-up of the skidmarks:-

And then we found the porcupine...

It was still alive. I am so sad. I wish that it had died on impact. It makes me heartsore to think that it might have been suffering there all night. We went to the farmer on whose farm we found it, and told him about the little guy. He said he would send his workers there to "take care of it". I don't really want to think about what that means. As long as it isn't suffering anymore I'll be happy.
But now, look at our tyre:-

Ish! And we were broke already this month to begin with, without still having to replace our two front tyres.

It was quite a bad night for "animal things" though, because after we'd hit the porcupine we got home and there came Cassidy running with a bird in her mouth. And the bird was still chirping. Grrrreat.

At least this morning we feel a bit better after having spoken to the farmer (our neighbour) who told us that the porcupines are actually real pests in these parts. And that there are hundreds of them around the farm. But I still feel sad for the poor little (BIG!) guy that we hit.

Enough about the porcupine though.

As we were driving out of our neighbour's farm, we were bombarded by his herd of cows. They closed around the bakkie and gave us a whole earful. And when we kept inching forward to get to work, they put on a bit of a "peepshow" for us. Let's just say we now know a bit about the birds and the bees. And the um, cows. Mooooove over Hugh Heffner. You got nothing on these guys.

And then, we saw these beautiful guys.

There was a little baby zebra with them too, but by the time I got my camer out, he'd already trotted off into the veld and we couldn't see him anymore.

*Bakkie = South African for pick-up truck; pronounced buck + ee


Thoxan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Thoxan said...

Meeting with Porcupine

Der hat auch ein Stachelschwein getroffen... *gg*

Beste Grüße aus far far north,

Char said...

Hello Tommilee c",)
Thanks for the pic of the Meeting with Porcupine! Owa!
And how did you get it right to delete your previous comment? You're one clever chap!

Shawn Cuz said...

Hey Char - it's been a while since I checked your blog - smaak that countryside riddled with porcupines and zebras - makes the heart a bit homesick! The only thing I run into on the way home is other cars!

Mycrazylife said...

Hi Char!

I'm so glad you came out of lurk land to say hello!

I am really enjoying perusing through your blog and this post was really amazing to me. My daughter would be thrilled to see the picture of the zebra, as she told me she wanted one for a pet last week! And those were some quills! Huge!

If you haven't already, you should stop by and visit my sweet girlfriend Kimmie, who is in the adoption process for the fourth time. I know you will be inspired by her great faith.

And..I'll be back to visit you soon!


Kelly said...

Oh, I envy you that you get to see such beautiful wildlife out there!

Frenchie said...

Oh No! Poor porcupine! But, poor Char and Robin too! I'm sorry about the tires. Glad you guys didn't go a$$ over tea kettle in the bakkie though, and you're ok!

The fact that you get to see zebra just larking in the fields is amazing to me...

My Goodness said...

So incredible...the things we don't see here in the States.

Thanks for coming by - nice to meet you!

Carla said...

Wow...that was an adventure. Poor Porcupine and poor you two!