NY Post – He was swallowed whole by a hippopotamus — and lived to tell the tale. The hippo attack, on the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe, happened 17 years ago, but Paul Templer this week recounted the tale to The Guardian. “There was no transition at all, no sense of approaching danger,” he recalled of the mauling. “It was as if I had suddenly gone blind and deaf.” A 27-year-old river guide at the time, Templer had a group of tourists and apprentice tour guides just a half mile from Victoria Falls when the 4,000-pound hippo attacked the kayakers. “I was aware that my legs were surrounded by water, but my top half was almost dry,” he recalled. “I seemed to be trapped in something slimy. There was a terrible, sulphurous smell, like rotten eggs, and a tremendous pressure against my chest. My arms were trapped but I managed to free one hand and felt around – my palm passed through the wiry bristles of the hippo’s snout. It was only then that I realized I was underwater, trapped up to my waist in his mouth.” Templer escaped his Moby Dick-like moment, but badly injured. He lost his left arm and had “a wound so savage that my lung was visible,” he recalled in his first-hand account of the attack. The mauling couldn’t even deter the river rat from taking to the water. Two years later, Templer said he led another expedition down the same stretch of river when a hippo again emerged from the depths, shocking the group. “I screamed so loudly that those with me said they’d never heard anything like it,” he said. “He dived back under and was never seen again. I’d bet my life savings it was the same hippo, determined to have the final word.”
There’s a few rules I live by. Rules that I will never ever break. One of those rules is I will never go to Africa. Originally this idea was because of AIDS/Malaria/Militias etc etc. But I can add another reason to my Africa ban and thats getting swallowed whole by fucking hippos. Whats the risk/reward for playing in hippo infested rivers in Africa? Reward: Take a bunch of pictures for facebook and say you’re cultured because you did some nature shit in a foreign country. Risk: Get swallowed by a hippopotamus like Pinocchio getting swallowed by a goddam whale. A quick bit of analysis tells me that ain’t fucking worth it. No amount of money or memories or experiences is worth being able to punch your hand through the fucking nostrils of a hippo from the inside.
PS – How about this guy convinced 2 years later the same hippo tried to attack him again? Like the fucking alligator who ate Chubbs’ hand in Happy Gilmore. Gimme a break with the dramatics, guy. That hippo probably ate about 40 limbless African kids in the past 2 years since sucking on your torso like a lollipop. I don’t think African river hippos hold grudges.
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