A walk on the wild side
What started as a part-time job pitching tents has taken an unexpected but thrilling career turn for 25-year-old Emmanuel Molosiwa.
The bubbly Mogapi native is currently employed by Planet Baobab as a tour guide, leading excursions intothe deep and wealthy bush around Ntwetwe Pan near Gweta.
With no previous experience in tour guiding, Molosiwa owes his vocation to his magnetic personality as much as his knowledge and love of nature.
A little white lie had a part to play as well.
Molosiwa read for a University of Botswana (UB) Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Science (ENS), which also comprises a major in English.
He continued his studies with UB to a Post Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE), which entails English and Geography qualifications.
Molosiwa joined Planet Baobab’s mother-company, Unchartered Africa Safari on 4 April this year.
Initially he was charged with pitching tents for the camp’s guests as a temporary job.
However, the physical work proved too heavy for him so he fabricated a story that he was billed for a teaching post interview in Gaborone.
“The Human Resource Manager then wanted to know what I qualified to teach. Well, I was interviewed on the spot about a variety of things, like the grass in the vicinity, plate tectonics, the climate, etc. Those are simple things!” he assures this slightly bemused reporter.
“That’s how I got hired, on the spot,” chuckles the easy-going youth, a thick Tswapong accent dominating his speech.
Molosiwa tells Voice Money he quickly had to leave his comfort zone and get used to the animals and the environment.
Fortunately, working outdoors was something he already had a passion for.
“I fell in love with nature during my studies at UB. Why books? Books are long and boring. How many tabs do you have to open on your computer? Make office reports? Why not go out in nature and take pictures behind the sunrise and sunset? Let nature be your source of inspiration, source of happiness. This is what I do and this is who I am!”
The avid tour guide studied fields like Climatology and Geography in his ENS degree.
He says the business of tour guiding has taught him the anatomy and physiology of animals, which constitutes behavioural sciences, an understanding of which is critical in dealing with wild animals.
He admits there are pros and cons to his new career.
“It is not a walk in the park being a tour guide, one of the reasons being isolation for long periods. But in terms of economics, you spend less and are able to save more. I have even thought of quitting but I keep at it and will not give up.”
As for the future, Molosiwa intends to work hard, gain more experience and eventually run his own safari camp.