“So You Want To Be A Safari Guide. It’s what I thought when I was twelve, now I am forty one. Let’s find out. This is a loose record of my experience at ENTABENI NATURE GUIDES six month guiding course.” Ryan Ennis
This is how Ryan In Africa starts. That was the hook for me. In 1985 when the movie “Out of Africa” came out I totally fantasied about living there. I didn’t want the life of Meryl Streep’s character for obvious reasons but for the beauty of the land and being completely back to basics. I bumped into Ryan a couple of days before he was to start his adventure. I was blown away that he was actually doing it. No one usually follows through with things like this. Adventures such as this are usually a pipe dream that we hear about for days which turn into weeks and soon years until it’s not talked about anymore. Ryan is living a dream that usually stays just that for many of us!
I was sooooo envious that he had a one way ticket to an adventure of a lifetime! Being a Stuntman I think you naturally crave that adrenaline high but this adrenaline would be completely different. Ryan isn’t on set in a controlled environment with first aid standing off camera. There is no craft service, nobody yells “cut” if things go wrong and there’s no stunt trailer. There’s trained guides, mother nature, wild animals and a massive amount of information to be learned!
Life should be about experience and that’s what I admired about what Ryan is doing. For those of you who don’t know Ryan he’s one of the Best Stud (I meant to type Stuntmen/Coordinator) in the film industry but I’ll leave that for the ‘Freudian’ lovers out there. Our paths have crossed on several different occasion over 17 years through friends, work and business. I love Ryan’s approach to life, he’s hilarious! It’s not everyday you get to read what it takes to be a Safari Guide so enjoy escaping with Ryan as he shares his entertaining loose record of his experience! I know you will laugh out loud, contemplate life a little and ask yourself “Am I living my dream?”
Here is an excerpt from Ryan In Africa~ “The Lion Walk“
“First we come across where the Lions killed a Wildebeest the night before. Knowing that they are well fed is a good thing, knowing they can always eat more is a bit sobering. So now we have the track and we know they are on the other side of some trees. We sneak through the trees like we are hunting rabbits. Big fucking six hundred pound rabbits with six inch teeth that want to kill us. It is a slow sneak. We soon spot the cats, six in all , we are almost outnumbered, not that it’s a fair fight. Did I mention the claws? Jesus! Cleverly, we move forward for a better look. Shortly after we arrive at a distance of about 125 yards the big male, lioness, and two cubs decide to move on, as they do so somehow they catch wind of our presence.
Now let me tell you there is nothing, NOTHING in this life that will burn itself into your memory like two huge lions with cubs to protect stopping in their tracks to turn and stare at you. A lot goes through your mind, like how your vehicle 300 meters away might as well be in Dallas, Texas for all the good it is to you now. The tension of that moment, with their eyes burning into the back of your head, burns all the silly useless thoughts that you waste your day with out of your head like an over cleaning itself. They decide that we aren’t an immediate threat and carry on, not without checking us out every ten seconds or so. We walked back when they were clear, I’m pretty sure that I floated back to the trucks and I bet there were no tracks behind me” Ryan In Africa.
This is just a taste of what happens in life when you make ‘critical choices‘ that lead to ‘defining moments‘. Be Safe Ryan, Not Careful!