| 55 I’ve tried to always listen to and follow my heart. It has led me to hundreds of countries, to unusual places and hidden smiles, on the route towards one continent. Africa was love at rst sight. I have a peculiar feeling of belonging every time that red earth slips through my ngers and I smell the scent of the soaking rain... It was ten years ago that I set out overland from Belgrade to Cape Town, South Africa, and then returned via Mozambique to Nairobi, Kenya. That adventure through Africa lasted just over three months, and since then it’s been obligatory for me to return every year. TheDarkContinent, asAfrica isdubbed, is the richest in terms of resources, while – paradoxically – being the poorest in economic terms. Vast territories of this continent, devastated by con ict, cramp in pain, while the treasures theyhidearestill being plundered. In sweat and blood, Africans are still compelled to ght for their freedom today.More thanhalf of the continent’s population lives on less than one U.S. dollar per day. Infrastructure ispoor, andeven non-existent in some parts, and while the continent largely relies on agriculture, industry is still only in its infancy. Climate changes have brought droughts, and in Africa that means famine. The high prices of grains insomecountriesbring this continent to its knees, with the number of hungry mouths increasing rapidly. Over 70 per cent of the workforce in agriculture is comprised of women, while the level of education is low. The people pay a heavy price for the fact that Africa was, and remains, on the periphery of the world capitalist system. I’ve visited 22 African countries, and I would return to all of them. However, there is one that I long desired to see and waited for, since childhood – DR Congo. Twoyears ago, I nally set foot on the soil of theoldest national park inAfrica, in search of the gentle giants that are mountain gorillas. A huge male, a Silverback, weighing around 200 kilos, stood not far from me on that rainy morning. Tranquil, he didn’t notice me, and looked as though he were dozing. And then he slowly moved a branch to one side and clumsily tried to hug his own body with his arms. That’s how one of my favourite, most engaging photos emerged. The Virunga You must rst come to love Africa before you’re introduced to its secrets. That’s because there where there are no roads, electricity, hot water, there the Harmattan (trade wind) knows how to seep into all of your pores, and comfort cannot be expected Afrika se najpre mora voleti da bi se upoznale njene tajne. Jer tamo gde nema puteva, struje, tople vode, tamo harmatan (vetar) ume da se zavuče u sve vaše pore, a udobnost ne može da se očekuje