Ghost & Darkness: What Scares You?

One of my favorite movies is Ghost and Darkness, it is about two man eating lions that slow down the building of a railroad in Tsavo, Kenya in the early 1900’s. The movie stars Val Kilmer and Michael Douglas. I’ve watched it many times. In 2016, I went to Kenya and visited the famous area of Tsavo. I missed the lions in that part of Kenya. I did see them in the Mara, which is central Kenya, just not in Tsavo. I saw large males laying in shade late in the day as we were driving the dusty lava rock trails in the Land Rover. While in the hot air balloon ride I saw a female, who had just taken down a zebra and was sharing it with her cub. The animals seem much bigger without bars between us.

I recently came across the real story written by the engineer and big game hunter, John Patterson, who accepted the job as project manager on the railroad. Yes, the lions did cunningly hunt the men working on the railway. The movie portrays them very much like he described his experience. Patterson eventually killed and stopped the two lions. I don’t know if I would have the courage to go on foot to hunt these animals.

Halloween brings to mind those scary things. I am not a fan of horror movies. I don’t need to scare myself by watching them. I find life itself is scary enough for me. Experience has also taught me that majority of what we are afraid doesn’t come true. Even though the two lions are named Ghost and Darkness, we are always surrounded by things that go bump in the night.

Are they real or imagined?

Happy Halloween!

Mary Guldan-Lindstrom, CPA

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