From the germ of an idea which came from badinage at supper last night, I worked up the following Really Awful Rhyme while travelling bumpily in the back of a bakkie (van) with young R on the way to a birthday party at Rosetta-In-Natal-Not-The-Stone-One-In-Egypt. The rhyme was preserved for posterity by using, for the first time, the voice recorder which comes with my mobile. I wonder how many other untried gadgets it has? Will it do the laundry and cooking? 

Once birdies used to go ‘Cheep, cheep,’
But prices which appear
To now seem so extremely steep,
Have made them say, ‘Dear, dear!’ 

While birds of the more snobbish sort –
Of lineage extensive –
Are chirping of what they have bought
By uttering, ‘Expensive!’ 

Anyway, the party was at a home overlooking a dam which had an otterly delightful sight I’ve never before seen in South Africa. A pair of otters spent the day cruising all over the dam and doing gymnastics. They are incredibly fast creatures, and a photographer’s nightmare without really sophisticated equipment. They swim fast, jump fast, and these didn’t stay on the surface for more than a few seconds at most. Over fifty shots, and these were the best I could do.


I have included these pictures with the ‘Close’ photo challenge theme for the reason that the term is very relative. (Though it must be admitted that some relatives aren’t at all close.) 🙂 While the otters may seem distant – yes, the little black blips are all you’re going to get – they were a lot closer than most people will find when viewing while seated sipping tea on their front lawns. We have the sea and whales; Rain Farm have a warthog (and other game); and our Midlands friends have otters. 

© June 2012 Colonialist (WordPress)

About colonialist

Active septic geranium who plays with words writing fantasy novels and professionally editing, with notes writing classical music, and with riding a mountain bike, horses and dinghies. Recently Indie Publishing has been added to this list.
This entry was posted in Challenge, Nature, Nonsense verse, Personal Journal, Photography, Poems, Really Awful Rhyme and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. optie says:

    Great rhyme Col, at our holiday home the otters climb onto the boat during the night looking for fish/bait. They leave their muddy footprints all over the boat 🙂


  2. Love those two top pics!
    Cute rhyme 🙂


  3. Lovely post, Col: I was bewitched by those first two photos, up close and personal: is that a warthog? What a face!
    Otters are so graceful. But lightning fast, as you say…


    • colonialist says:

      A warthog indeed – up VERY close and personal. They can be quite sweet creatures, but also really fearsome!
      Those otters certainly got about! I didn’t even know we HAD them here, so was thrilled to see them!


  4. I have only once seen an otter and was so excited that all the pics were a flop! LOL @ the rhyme! I hope you had a wonderful Father’s day, Col!


  5. adinparadise says:

    Sweet little birdie rhyme, Col. You are very funny. 😉 At least you tried with the otters. The warthog looks very close indeed. I’ve never tried my voice recorder…. now you have me looking for it. 😉


    • colonialist says:

      That warthog was only a few paces away! The otters were well visible, but not on film!
      Yes, the recorder thing can be rather handy when one wants to remember something. Faster than texting, and audible even against a noisy diesel.


  6. susanm says:

    Hi still so funny and informative as always. My daughter recently started blogging and here is her blog if you are interested. http://stilettos-in-the-bush.blogspot.com Send regards to MBH and hugs to all.


  7. Pussycat44 says:

    I have experienced the speed of an otter when, thinking the otter was asleep in the shade, I wriggled my fingers on the water in his pond and, like a flash of lightning, he was there and bit my hand.


  8. Being close to a warthog is my idea of a great life. They could remove all my warts. No longer would people have to take me as I am. . .warts and all! YAY!!

    At least you can say that your photos of the otters (I also love to watch them play!) were Pulitzer Prize material compared to my glorious photos of the fireflies last Wednesday! Don’t feel too complimented by that, however. Most photos are better than those. . .

    We have to Skype soon! (I figure that means next year – what about you? 😆 ) Glad we don’t have a deadline, although maybe we should set one!


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