IMG_5106As a kid growing up dirt poor in the mountains of Oklahoma and Arkansas, I read every one of the Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan series in our little country school’s library. Tarzan was my hero. In the woodlands where we lived, I sometimes stripped down to a loin cloth, hung old rope in the trees to create a Tarzan-like pathway from which I could swing from tree to tree. Just as Tarzan did. I even practiced his famous yell.

I dreamed of one day traveling to Africa and visiting Cheetah the chimp, Tantor the elephant, and all the other creatures of Tarzan’s Wild Kingdom.

And I eventually did. I’ve been fortunate indeed as a freelance writer/photojournalist to have traveled the world. My fate was to “always be a’going,” as Osa Johnson said of life with her adventuring husband Martin Johnson (I Married Adventure). I have seen and experienced so much of the world

Africa remains one of my favorite destinations. From the archaeology of Egypt and the refugee camps of Algeria to the tops of mountain peaks and, of course, the rain forest where I visited elephants (absolutely my favorite wild animal), giraffes, wildebeest, zebras, lions… No wonder Tarzan the Ape Man loved his home.

My next dream destination is to canoe the Congo River with my Tanzanian friend Veda and visit with the Great Apes that found Tarzan as a baby and raised him as one of their own. Not necessarily that I WANT to become a member of that particular branch of apes… but just to see them.

For Heaven to be complete, it surely has wildernesses and animals. I’m certain God thought of that when He created the galaxies. Maybe I can even swing from tree to tree. With Tarzan.

Charles W. Sasser is author of over 60 books and thousands of magazine articles. His latest book is Crushing the Collective: America’s Last Chance to Remain Free and Self-Governing. A follow-up to that book is pending: Sketches of Lunacy: Looneyville USA’s Descent into Madness.