TORCHWOOD TRAVEL derived its name from the TORCHWOOD TREE and today we would like to share with you the STORY OF THE TORCHWOOD TREE written by my good friend Ralph Sibande for Torchwood Travel.
Ralph Sibande is a well known author of many amazing animal stories.
Ralph is the voice of the Savanna through Storytelling.
You can visit his website to read some of the amazing stories that
he writes. The website is called The Spirit of the African Bushveld.
Before we publish his story I wanted to show you what a Torchwood Tree looks like and just give you some information about it.
The common name, Torchwood, has been derived because the dry kernels it sheds that have been burnt as torches. Older trees have an amazing, upright, deeply folded or buttressed trunk, that visually singles them out from other trees So the Torchwood Tree is easily identified from its trunk alone. So look out for this tree when you next in the bushveld.
THE LEGEND OF THE TORCHWOOD TREE. Ugobandlovu.
This is the story of the Torchwood Tree.
It is the evening story told under the bright eyes of the stars, and over the licking and leaping flames of Boma fires, all over Southern Africa. The flames that kindle the fires of love of travel in the hearts of all men, women and children all over the world.
It is the story of love, sacrifice and triumph of the spirit of adventure of all those who seek to find the hidden magic and mysteries of Africa.
It is now rare to find the Torchwood Tree, but many years ago it stood tall in the savanna plains of Africa, and was revered for its wisdom and sound judgement.
When the great darkness descended upon the land, man and animal became foes, and animal turned against animal, and man turned against man. It was the darkness within the hearts of many that threatened the very survival of every living creature on the land; and to plunge all life, down the precipice of perdition.
Many had promised to find the key that will restore peace and harmony in the land, but as they ventured forth in terms quest, they too were swallowed by the hate and greed that they sought to stop. As time was running out, despair and fear gripped the hearts of many with a crocodiles grip. And Ndlovu, the Elephant shook his wise head in shame.
When the warthog offered to find the missing key, many scoffed at him and his impudence; but Ndlovu authorized him to go ahead, as time was now surely running out.
The warthog set out in the evening on his quest. He went to the Torchwood Tree and requested help.
"How can I help, Ntibane?" asked the Torchwood tree.
"O Great One, open my heart that I may see, and my eyes that I may discern, and my ears that I may understand the hidden mysteries of the land." answered Ntibane, the warthog.
"Pickup my seeds, lying on the ground, and carry them for your provision on the way, and use them as your heart shall prompt you to do." said the Torchwood Tree.
Ntibane, the warthog collected as many seed kernels into his satchel, and set off on his journey with a light heart.
When he was hungry, he used a pestle and mortar to ground the seeds into a tasty paste which he mixed with water and ate. He traveled for many days without becoming hungry.
Then he became thirsty and mixing the ground Torchwood seed paste with his water, he found out that he could travel far without drinking water. But he had one nagging problem, he did not find the missing key he was looking for.
One dark evening, he could not go on with his journey, because there really was a great darkness in the land. So he ground his seed kernels again and used the oil to make himself a torch.
Ntibane was surprised because the light from the torch not only lit his way, but he could see into the soul of every living and non living thing in the forest and the grasslands. And for the first time Ntibane could speak with all animals, trees, forests, valleys and hills as he learnt first hand what bothered them most, and what they wanted from life.
After travelling the length and breath of the land, Ntibane, the warthog, was ready to give Ndlovu, the King, his report.
All animals assembled together at the Great Place, to hear Ntibane give his report.
Ntibane cleared his throat and addressed the King and his subjects.
"Your majesty, members of the Royal Council, citizens and friends, I have a short message for you.
"Unless we travel with our hearts, and listen with our souls, the journey may not be worth the cost. It is a privilege to see the world, but it is a greater privilege to listen and learn what it says to us; because it is talking to us all the time and we should listen.
"I recommend to you today, the light of the Torchwood Tree to light up your journey.
"I have learnt first hand that all living and non living things, need our love, respect, and caring attention. We should communicate our concern for their well being by deed and word of mouth. We should protect them from all danger."
The animals cleaned and cleared the rivers; loved and cherished the trees; and no hunting of animals was allowed except by those who lived on them, and all travelers used the Torchwood lamps to enlighten their hearts, to dispel the darkness of ignorance and doubts, and to make travelling what it was originally meant to be: a personal journey of discovery and enlightenment.
King Ndlovu rewarded Ntibane the warthog very well. He was awarded the Freedom of the Plains medal, and can be seen around the savanna plains, talking to Mother Earth on bended knees kissing her with fervent devotion.
With his task accomplished, the Torchwood Tree is leaving the land for the stars in great numbers. Only a few trees are still with us today. They are now protected trees and are cherished by both man and animal. And peace and hope has returned to the land.
This tradition is still kept and followed by TORCHWOOD TRAVEL. They offer the Ntibane warthog travel: a personalized experience for growth and building of positive empathy for nature and animals.
They kindle the fires of love for Africa in the hearts of their clients.
Copyright Ralph Sibande