In a seemingly dead place, barren of any signs of life, only by reading the “Bushman’s newspaper” – tracks in the sand, he found them all and then showed to us on an outstretched hand.

I’ve learned to appreciate a good guide. One who seems more like a magician when he practices his craft – conjuring unearthly views or rare animals only by asking me to close my eyes for twenty seconds, or take a closer look at a bushy tree. A guide like that is a special treasure. He or she can open whole worlds, if you only ask the right questions.

Tommy Collard is such a treasure. He brings the desert to life. A place people only associate with death, nobody would even think of venturing there on their own, let alone finding anything interesting. Geckos, snakes, chameleons, he knows where to look, where to dig, and when to back off when he finds them. As any good guide, he is a character on his own, and the creatures that he finds are a big part of his image – he even walks like some of them.