Some books are meant to be a one time read and then either discarded or placed on a shelf to gather dust.
Others, however, fall into the category of being a faithful companion and friend to be called upon when you need something soothing to help you relax and appreciate Nature’s soothing attributes.
Gail Evans’ Meditations In My Favourite Places in Southern Africa: A Travelogue For Inner And Outer Journeys
falls into the second category and perhaps can be compared to a good wine that you want to continuously savour and never to be forgotten.
Evans in this deceptively slim volume attempts to not only describe her favourite locations in Southern Africa, but also to show us the “the world through the eyes of the inner spirit, to retain the memory, and to include a meditation at the end of each chapter.”
The meditation exercises that are included at the end of each chapter refer to the seven colour chakras that are created by the different frequencies of the light.
These therapeutic exercises are divided as follows: meditation, unhealthy charkas, health charkas, evolutionary sense and our own personal development.
What is very noteworthy upon reading the book is that our senses are awakened as we voyage to Okavango, the Kruger National Park, Karoo, Hogsback, the Coastlines, Sterkfontein, and Sentinel. We also become sensitized to the author’s unique insights into nature’s beauty and her keen sense of her surroundings.
For example, when she lands in Okavango and asserts: “What hits me first is the silence. Nothing stirs in the warm morning air, only the sound of a swish as my blue-jeans brush against the grass. I can see nothing of the delta, surrounded by tall, green stalks and cannot believe that moments before, a panoramic feast lay before my eyes.”
Black and white photos of the areas visited by the author precede each chapter of the book. Unfortunately, the photos are not in colour and this is perhaps the one major deficiency of this beautiful little book. What a lasting impression the book would have had if these photos were in colour!
The last part of the book includes travel information pertaining to South Africa as well as a long list of web sites the reader may surf in order to find out more about the places visited, the safaris, accommodations and transportation.
It is refreshing to read a book that enables us to forget the many tragedies of the world and to just sit back and enjoy Mother Nature.