/ / “The Buffalo Shot Me”

“The Buffalo Shot Me”

It was hard to believe! The patient lying in front of me with a gunshot wound of the abdomen affirmed vehemently that he had been shot by a buffalo!

I was standing at his bed in the emergency department of the 100 bed Nyankunde Hospital. It was late afternoon. The jungle outside was steaming in the hot sun following a sudden, sharp thunderstorm, so typical of this equatorial region. Cases of malaria, leprosy, filariasis, typhoid fever, meningitis, and pneumonia were seen with monotonous regularity– but being shot by a buffalo was something else!

“ How did it happen?” I asked excitedly. 

“Well, Bwana, it was like this,” he began. “I had been tracking this old buffalo for some time and he finally hid in a thicket. I thought I saw him move so I fired one round.”( I should explain that at this time the only guns that Africans in the congo were allowed to carry were old, double -barrelled, muzzle -loading muskets, which were only used at very short distances.)

“ I was real close to him when I fired, and almost instantaneously, the buffalo charged at me out of the thicket. I didn’t have time to fire the second round before the buffalo was almost on top of me. I fended him off with my gun but the sling got caught on his horns. He drew back a step and wagged his head, trying to free the gun from his horns. Suddenly the gun fired. I was hit in the stomach. The buffalo was really frightened by the bang and ran into the forest.“One of the men who had carried the wounded hunter on a home-made stretcher- a blanket slung on a pole- confirmed the story. He had seen it from a few yards away.The patient recovered successfully but it was a long time before he went buffalo hunting again.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *