The Ultimate Safari

by Nadine Gordimer

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How does the narrator of "The Ultimate Safari" describe her encounters with animals?

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On her journey through Kruger park, the narrator and the group of people she is traveling with encounter a pack of elephants moving slowly through the wilderness. The narrator describes her initial feelings of fear before she becomes extremely interested in the elephants. As they continue on their journey, the narrator describes seeing various animals eating and relaxing throughout the park. The travelers go out of their way to avoid certain animals like lions and hyenas, and the narrator is intrigued by the majesty of them. The narrator also recalls the frightful night when the lions roam around their group. She is so scared that she prays for one of the lions to take a person on the outside fringe of the group. The narrator also recalls seeing vultures flying overhead waiting for people to die on the arduous journey. Overall, the narrator does not directly approach any animals and simply expresses her fear of being attacked by certain predators. Her interactions with the wild animals are brief and take place at a distance. Fortunately, the majority of her family makes it to the refugee camp on the other side of Kruger Park.

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In The Ultimate Safari, the narrator and the group that she travels through Kruger Park with encounter a number of animals. 

One night (she didn't know which night it was because they were walking any time, all the time) they heard lions near. 

"Panting, like we do when we run, but it’s a different kind of panting: you can hear they’re not running, they’re waiting, somewhere near."

So everyone rolled close together and on top of each other, those on the edge fighting to get into the middle. The narrator shuts her eyes, not wanting to see the tree from which a lion might jump into the middle of the group. 

The narrator is squashed next to a woman that smells bad because she is afraid, but the narrator is glad to hold tight on to her. 

The leader jumps up and beats on a tree with a dead branch. 

"He shouted at the lions like a drunk man shouting at nobody, in our village."

The lions went away but she could hear them groaning and shouting back from far off. 

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