Marlowe's Elegant New Sibling Opens in Cow Hollow – Eater SF

Restaurateur Anna Weinberg has been “starving” in Cow Hollow while working to open her new restaurant in the neighborhood. “I’ve been living on Balboa Cafe fries,” she says, bemoaning the lack of other options. As of last night, there’s something new: Cow Marlowe, which opened at 3154 Fillmore Street a few days ahead of schedule.

When the notoriously debauched Eastside West closed last December, Weinberg and Big Night partner James Nicholas decided to pounce on the space.

“It occurred to me that so many people that were making bad decisions at Eastside West 10 years ago were still in the neighborhood,” Weinberg says, “but now they’re a bit older — some of them with strollers.”

Cow Marlowe, she hopes, will be the place for them: A more mature spot to dine out and cut loose. Last night, they were already at it, with bottles of Piper-Heidsieck bubbles donated to the whole room by socialite (and Weinberg pal) David Shimmon.

Cow Marlowe joins Big Night group siblings Marlowe (2010), Park Tavern (2011), the Cavalier (2013), Leo’s Oyster Bar (2016), and Marianne’s (2016). Like the rest, it’s dressed to impress by Ken Fulk’s design firm, which won Bon Appétit’s 2016 award for best-designed restaurant with Leo’s.

Senior designer Tiffany Kramer took the lead at 3154 Fillmore, and the results are custom brass lighting, retrofitted antique cabinets that serve as the host stand, and cobalt blue Sodalite granite for the bar counters and a communal table. Seating is at leather banquettes and Thonet-style chairs, and the floor is made from dark concrete strewn with red Persian-style rugs.


Tile outside the new restaurant


The former Eastside West space has been repainted

The bar and dining room are an elegant backdrop for Big Night executive chef Jennifer Puccio, who plays the restaurant group’s hits. She’s emphasizing an extended bar bites menu with popular items like crispy Brussels sprouts chips, warm deviled eggs (aged provolone, pickled jalapeño, and bacon) and a healthier take on the Park Tavern fries: grilled furikake green beans with smoked egg yolk, caviar, and truffle aioli.

Cow Marlowe chef de cuisine Steve Dustin (the Cavalier, Finn Town) will prepare Marlowe hits like a grilled Marin Sun Farms pork chop, poulet vert (the restaurant’s popular roast chicken dish) and Anson Mills polenta (with sautéed wild mushrooms, shaved parmesan, truffle salsa verde, and a poached egg). A late-night menu from 11 p.m. to 1 a.m. unlocks the regular Park Tavern fries and more snacks, and dessert from Big Night pastry chef Emily Luchetti includes Key lime cheesecake, Guittard chocolate pudding, and an orange creamsicle sundae (bourbon and caramel soaked oranges, vanilla bean ice cream, orange sorbet and candied almonds).

Beyond beer and wine, Mike Anders of Marianne’s and Leo’s has a fresh Cow Marlowe cocktail menu. Drinks with Marina teasing-names include the Lululemon Drop (Tito’s Vodka, Acqua di Cedro, lemon, and thyme) and the Brad & Chad (made with Avion Reposado Tequila, gin, and Green Chartreuse) — and are likely to be embraced by locals.


Leather banquettes and Thonet-style chairs for seating


Bar seating in the background


Blue sodalite granite tables


Champagne on the Sodalite granite bar


A mounted head behind the bar


Booth seating at Cow Marlowe


Herringbone-patterned tiles on the restaurant’s walls


Bar seating at Cow Marlowe


The Cow Marlowe burger
Courtesy of Cow Marlowe


A Lululemon Drop
Courtesy of Cow Marlowe


Another view on the cobalt blue marble


Hanging brass lamps illuminate the dining room


Cow Marlowe’s floor is a dark concrete with red rugs


Looking onto the newly repainted building

Cow Marlowe is open for dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Wednesday, and from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. Thursday to Saturday. The bar opens at 4 p.m. Monday to Saturday, and a late night menu is available Thursday to Saturday from 11 p.m. to 1 p.m.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Coco the cow hops fence, evades capture: 'I've never had one do that' – National Post

CONCEPTION BAY SOUTH, N.L. — A Newfoundland farmer is on the lookout for an escaped cow that hopped his farm’s fence last Thursday.

Coco was last spotted on Saturday, two days after she leapt over the fence and escaped the farm in Conception Bay South, 30 kilometres west of St. John’s.

“I’ve had cows for my lifetime and I’ve never had one do that,” said farmer Barry Scott.

He is asking the public not to approach the 450-kilogram black cow as the search continues.

“She’s not a little pup or anything, she’s a fairly big animal,” Scott said.

One man was hurt in a tussle with Coco on Saturday afternoon as he tried to catch her.

Scott was on his way when Coco again evaded capture, and he and his family have been searching for her since.

The large animal may be dangerous when approached in the wild but Scott still hopes he can bring the clever cow home.

Scott said public safety is his biggest concern right now and he’s asking people to call him with Coco’s whereabouts rather than try to apprehend her.

He said putting Coco down is a last resort in case she poses a danger to other people in her travels, but he hopes to bring her back to the barn and calm her down.

Scott said he raised Coco from the time she was a calf.

The family is growing concerned as the days since her last sighting stretch on, but Scott still hopes to bring Coco home to the farm safely.

The part of me that lurks underneath isn’t finished grappling with this French journalist acting the tough, hard-bitten reporter
The tests claim to be able to identify food sensitivities associated with headaches, lethargy, brain fog, depression and an huge array of other symptoms
We concluded that practically all of western Canada, and the sizeable conservative minority in eastern Canada, were practically unrepresented in the national media
What should not change are the ideas and perspectives that animate the National Post. Its founding insight is as correct today as it was two decades ago

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Washington Approves Lethal Action on Two Wolf Packs for Cattle Attacks – Drovers Magazine

Wildlife officials have approved the lethal removal of wolves from two packs in Washington that are responsible for multiple attacks on cattle.

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) Director Kelly Susewind made the authorization on Nov. 7 to approve lethal action against the Smackout Pack in Stevens County and the Togo Pack in Ferry County.

The Smackout Pack has preyed on five cattle since Aug. 20, with four heifers being killed and a calf being injured during attacks on private pasture. The attacks prompted Susewind to authorize the removal of one or two members of the pack. There are four or five adult wolves and no known pups in the pack.

Donny Martorello, WDFW wolf policy lead, says the latest attack in late October helped meet the threshold for considering lethal action under WDFW’s wolf-livestock interaction protocol.

Lethal removal policy for WDFW allows wolves to be killed if they prey on livestock three times in a 30 day period or four times in a 10 month period. The latest attacks would mean the Smackout Pack eclipsed the 10 month threshold established by WDFW and its 18-member Wolf Advisory Group in 2016.

“The purpose of this action is to change the pack’s behavior and deter continuing predation on livestock,” Martorello says. “That strategy is consistent with the guidelines established by the state’s Wolf Conservation and Management Plan and the department’s protocol.”

Additional lethal removal has been authorized for the remaining members of the Togo Pack. Earlier this grazing season a male wolf was killed in northern Ferry County after the Togo pack had preyed on livestock six times since November, with three cases happening during a 10 period in August. The Togo pack removal saw backlash from activists groups who sued to stop the kill order. During the waiting period for a court hearing a rancher shot at the male wolf in self-defense, resulting in an injury to the wolf before a final kill order was approved.

It was confirmed on Nov. 1 by WDFW staff that another calf was injured by the Togo Pack after being attacked on private land by the pack. Currently, the pack consists of one female adult wolf and two pups.

Since the affected cattle are grazing private land, a permit was issued to the rancher to kill the wolves. It would allow the rancher, his immediate family or his employees to kill wolves if they enter the private fenced pasture where the livestock are located.

To help limit wolf interactions with cattle there have been a number non-lethal measures utilized by the ranchers impacted by the attacks of both packs. These methods include using ranger riders as deterrents.

“Authorizing the removal of wolves is one of the most difficult decisions I’ve had to make in my professional career,” Susewind says. “Our department is committed to working with a diversity of people and interests to find new ways to reduce the loss of both wolves and livestock in our state.”

These wolf removal announcements follow a similar approval for lethal action on the Old Profanity Territory Pack at the end of last month. That pack has attacked 16 cattle this year and already had two wolves killed. 

Since the start of the year, the Washing was home to at least 122 wolves, 22 packs, and 14 successful breeding pairs, according to an annual field study conducted by state, tribal, and federal wildlife managers. That compares to 27 wolves, five packs, and three successful breeding pairs documented in 2012.

For more information about the livestock depredation cases involving wolf packs in Washington read the following stories:

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

How Much Hay Will a Cow Consume? – Drovers Magazine

This week’s snowy weather has reminded cow calf producers that winter hay feeding has begun or will begin shortly.

Estimating forage usage by cows is an important part of the task of calculating winter feed needs. Hay or standing forage intake must be estimated in order to make the calculations. Forage quality will be a determining factor in the amount of forage consumed. Higher quality forages contain larger concentrations of important nutrients so animals consuming these forages should be more likely to meet their nutrient needs from the forages. Also cows can consume a larger quantity of higher quality forages.

Higher quality forages are fermented more rapidly in the rumen leaving a void that the animal can re-fill with additional forage. Consequently, forage intake increases. For example, low quality forages (below about 6% crude protein) will be consumed at about 1.5% of body weight (on a dry matter basis) per day. Higher quality grass hays (above 8% crude protein) may be consumed at about 2.0% of body weight. Excellent forages, such as good alfalfa, silages, or green pasture may be consumed at the rate of 2.5% dry matter of body weight per day. The combination of increased nutrient content AND increased forage intake makes high quality forage very valuable to the animal and the producer. With these intake estimates, now producers can calculate the estimated amounts of hay that need to be available.

Using an example of 1200 pound pregnant spring-calving cows, lets assume that the grass hay quality is good and tested 8% crude protein. Cows will voluntarily consume 2.0% of body weight or 24 pounds per day. The 24 pounds is based on 100% dry matter. Grass hays will often be 7 to 10% moisture. If we assume that the hay is 92% dry matter or 8% moisture, then the cows will consume about 26 pounds per day on an “as-fed basis”. Unfortunately we also have to consider hay wastage when feeding big round bales. Hay wastage is difficult to estimate, but generally has been found to be from 6% to 20% (or more). For this example, lets assume 15% hay wastage. This means that approximately 30 pounds of grass hay must be hauled to the pasture for each cow each day that hay is expected to be the primary ingredient in the diet.

After calving and during early lactation, the cow may weigh 100 pounds less, but will be able to consume about 2.6% of her body weight (100% dry matter) in hay. This would translate into 36 pounds of “as-fed” hay per cow per day necessary to be hauled to the pasture. This again assumes 15% hay wastage. Accurate knowledge of average cow size in your herd as well as the average weight of your big round bales becomes necessary to predict hay needs and hay feeding strategies.

Big round hay bales will vary in weight. Diameter and length of the bale, density of the bale, type of hay, and moisture content all will greatly influence weight of the bale. Weighing a pickup or trailer with and without a bale may be the best method to estimate bale weights.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Consuming fermented dairy products is associated with a healthier life-style and greater adherence to the … – Gut Microbiota for Health (press release)

This post has been written by Guillermo Mena-Sanchez and co-authored by Nancy Babio and Jordi Salas-Salvadó, from published article Mena-Sánchez G, Babio N, Martínez-González MÁ, et al. Fermented dairy products, diet quality, and cardio-metabolic profile of a Mediterranean cohort at high cardiovascular risk. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2018; 28(10):1002-11. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2018.05.006.

Fermented foods have been used for thousands of years and they come about through extensive microbial growth. These foods are known for improving shelf life, safety and organoleptic and nutritional properties when compared with the original food substrates. Furthermore, fermented foods that retain living cultures (e.g. yogurt and some cheeses) may reduce the risk of some diseases. Although the impact of fermented foods on human health enjoys a positive perception, well designed studies that objectively evaluate their health benefits remain scarce.

A new cross-sectional study, led by researchers from CIBEROBN centre at the Universitat Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona (Spain) in collaboration with another 23 research groups from the PREDIMED-Plus clinical trial, has found that consuming fermented dairy products is associated with a healthier life-style and greater adherence to the Mediterranean Diet.

This observational study evaluated the associations between consuming fermented dairy products, diet quality and the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) components in 6,572 Mediterranean men and women (mean age 65 years) who were overweight or obese and suffered from MetS.

Participants who consumed higher amounts of fermented dairy products and especially yogurt showed greater adherence to the Mediterranean Diet. Likewise, they reported higher levels of consumption of healthy foods including fruit, vegetables, fish, nuts and wholemeal bread, while consuming lower levels of white bread, alcohol and cookies. These participants also smoked less, which suggests that consuming fermented dairy products is a possible marker of a healthy lifestyle.

In line with these findings, another previous study by our research group found that yogurt consumption is inversely associated with a lower risk of metabolic syndrome (MetS) incidence, which supports yogurt consumption as a diet quality indicator. These data also add to previous studies supporting the beneficial effect of yogurt on risk factors for type 2 diabetes.

Meanwhile, high levels of cheese consumption were associated with a low risk of hypertriglyceridemia and low HDL-cholesterol plasma levels. These results were observed when comparing participants located in the highest quartile of cheese consumption (±50 grams/day) with those who consumed smaller amounts of cheese. In the case of yogurt consumption, total, low and whole-fat yogurt intake was not associated with any of the MetS components.

The results obtained in this observational study can be explained by the intrinsic components of fermented dairy products. Yogurt and cheese are actually nutritionally dense foods, with a matrix of nutrients that make them unique. These fermented dairy products, and especially cheese, typically have a high content of good quality protein and calcium bioavailability. Fermented dairy products also typically contain other sources of minerals, vitamins and bacteria with potential benefits for human health. Furthermore, the increased bioavailability of insulinotropic amino acids and peptides, as well as the bacterial biosynthesis of vitamin K2, have been proposed as potential mechanisms that explain the results of this observational study.

As we did not analyze participants’ gut microbiota in the study, we are not familiar with the role played by cheese and yogurt bacterial strains in modulating the gut microbiota as a mechanism of action. However, adherence to the Mediterranean Diet was recently associated with higher bifidobacterial counts and higher levels of total short-chain fatty acids, which might explain the gut microbiota’s partial role in mediating the Mediterranean Diet’s health benefits.

The different ways the studies looking at fermented dairy products have been designed means we cannot elucidate how fermented foods contribute to human health. Clinical trials and large prospective epidemiological studies are required to confirm our findings, along with studies specifically designed to address the impact of food fermentation on health outcomes.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Youngsters herd 'selfie with cow contest' in West Bengal – Economic Times

Kolkata: A group of young professionals named Goseva Parivar has been travelling across West Bengal to spread awareness about the economic benefits of rearing a cow and about the financial losses a family can incur by selling or slaughtering her.

The cow protection campaign, which started with the ‘Selfie with Gomata’ contest in 2015, launched its ‘Selfie with Gomata, 2018’ on Sunday with a rider– save cow scientifically.

Slamming the use of force for “Gauraksha”, executive member of the group, Lalit Agarwal told ET, “Gauraksha using religious sermons is passé now. Exercising violence means to protect cows cannot be a sustainable way of Gauraksha. We are trying to reach farmers irrespective of cast, creed and religion and explain about the financial benefits of rearing a cow. We are also explaining what monetary loss a family would incur if they sell a cow or take her to the slaughter house. We are aiming at a complete stop of sale for slaughtering cows, but of course not through violent means.”

The contest ‘Selfie with Gomata’ had drawn at least 10,000 entries last year and crashed the group’s brand new app. “So, this year the entries would be received through Whatsapp, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook,” said Abhishek Singh, the in-charge of the contest.

“The primary reason of conducting this contest is to impart knowledge to people and make them aware of the benefits of protecting cows. Not for once have we mentioned any religious connection with Gomata or brought in references of Hindu gods and goddesses.”

The group claims that despite working with several organisations, it has never experienced any political influence or resistance in West Bengal while holding training camps in villages.

“We have installed 70 bio gas plants in four districts –West Midnapore, Bankura, Purulia and Burdwan. In more than hundred villages, we have already set up camps and are also connecting city groups to farmers for better bovine trade. We are trying to make farmers understand that milk is not the only thing they can get from a cow. Cow urine and dung are the main products that they should use. Since the price of LPG gas and fertilisers are soaring, they can use bio-gas and fertilisers made from cow dung.

Even though we do not sell cow urine, we have taught them to process and filter cow urine to use it as medicine. We have got positive response from many Muslim families as well,” said Agarwal.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Cash-Strapped Argentines Won't Give Up Their Beloved Beef – Bloomberg

[unable to retrieve full-text content]


Bloomberg

Cash-Strapped Argentines Won't Give Up Their Beloved Beef
Bloomberg
In the sixth-largest ranching nation, grilled beef is so ingrained in culinary and social habits that consumption is proving resilient to belt-tightening. Argentines wolfed down their famed grilled cuts at an annualized rate of 57.7 kilograms (127

and more »

Source link

Episode 875: Why Did The Cow Cross The Border? – NPR

Enlarge this image

Cattle crossing.

Jason Beaubien/NPR


hide caption

toggle caption

Jason Beaubien/NPR

Lately, we’ve been nerding out about cattle. Specifically, about this one particular set of facts. Every year, the United States exports 500 million tons of beef to Mexico. But every year, the United States imports 500 million tons of beef from Mexico.

We heard this, and thought: How is that possible? Why are we trotting all these cows back and forth across the border? We sent a reporter to the border to find out. The answers to those questions explain a lot about how trade works.

Music: “Nighttime Cruisin'”

Find us: Twitter/ Facebook / Instagram

Subscribe to our show on Apple Podcasts, Pocket Casts and NPR One.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

The lion bought in Harrods who prowled the Kings Road in an open-top Bentley: Story of London's unlikeliest pet … – Daily Mail

The lion bought in Harrods who prowled the Kings Road in an open-top Bentley: Story of London’s unlikeliest pet revealed in stunning pictures that chronicle life of cub purchased in 1969 when department store sold host of exotic beasts

John Rendall For The Daily Mail

Almost half a century ago, John Rendall and Ace Bourke bought a lion cub at Harrods, named him Christian and raised him on London’s King’s Road, before returning him to the African wild.

A new book illustrated with stunning photographs taken by Derek Cattani, one of Christian’s ‘human pride’, retells the moving story of London’s unlikeliest pet, his new life in Africa and the heart-warming reunion between man and lion that has become one of the world’s most watched and loved videos.

Though he was just a tiny cub, there was something about the self-assured expression in his eyes that made him irresistible. It implied a strength of character that belied his cuddly teddy bear appearance.

As we gazed at him in his small cage, I blurted the words that would change my life for ever. ‘Why don’t we buy him?’ I said to my mate Ace Bourke.

Christian the lion having lunch with model Emma Breeze and friends at the Casserole restaurant on King's Road, London. the lion cub was bought in Harrods’ pet department  in November 1969

Christian the lion having lunch with model Emma Breeze and friends at the Casserole restaurant on King's Road, London. the lion cub was bought in Harrods’ pet department  in November 1969

Christian the lion having lunch with model Emma Breeze and friends at the Casserole restaurant on King’s Road, London. the lion cub was bought in Harrods’ pet department in November 1969

‘I’ve already named him,’ replied Ace, nodding in agreement. ‘He’s called Christian.’

Our visit to Harrods’ pet department that fateful day in November 1969 had been prompted by simple curiosity.

As two young Australians newly arrived in the UK, we’d heard crazy tales about a London store where you could buy not just the usual clothes and household goods, but tapirs, snakes, monkeys and even pumas and lions as well.

It sounded incredible, but when I saw the beautiful lion cub for sale that day — alert, trusting and magnificent — I was smitten. 

(These were the days before the Endangered Species Act of 1976, when it was legal for exotic creatures to be sold to the public.)

And so began our wonderful, rollercoaster life with Christian.

Day after day, after the Christmas shoppers had gone home, we’d turn up at Harrods to play with our new pet as we tried to convince his keepers that we’d be suitable owners.

Already weighing 2st, he was more than a handful as he leapt around and wrestled with us — an enchanting ball of energy with razor-sharp teeth.

Anthony Bourke and John Rendall take Christian for s spin in their convertible  on the King's Road. The pair would take the lion in a ride in the car to the churchyard to get exercise and to play

Anthony Bourke and John Rendall take Christian for s spin in their convertible  on the King's Road. The pair would take the lion in a ride in the car to the churchyard to get exercise and to play

Anthony Bourke and John Rendall take Christian for s spin in their convertible on the King’s Road. The pair would take the lion in a ride in the car to the churchyard to get exercise and to play

Patiently, the staff answered our excited but naïve questions before asking their own: where, exactly, did we think an energetic three-month-old lion cub might actually live?

It was a problem. But, as luck would have it, I’d newly started a job in a pine furniture store, Sophisto-Cat, on the King’s Road, whose owner had grown up in Africa. How might he feel about having a lion on the premises?

It was an outrageous request, but I didn’t have any better ideas. Surely, I argued, a lion was the ultimate ‘sophistocat’ — the perfect mascot?

There was a huge basement which Christian could have to himself, and we’d be on hand to look after him, as Ace and I were living in the flat above the store. 

Amazingly, the owner enthusiastically agreed. To our delight, the Harrods staff approved; we would collect Christian in three weeks’ time.

A few days later, we had a call. ‘Can you collect Christian tomorrow?’ It transpired that our new acquisition had escaped the night before and all but destroyed a display of goat-skin rugs in the carpet department, whose manager was less than pleased. What had we let ourselves in for?

It was a thrilling time to be in London. Among Sophisto-Cat’s close neighbours were Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren, whose boutique later became the birthplace of the punk movement, and opposite was ultra-fashionable clothes store Granny Takes A Trip, where The Beatles, Who, Cream and Jimi Hendrix were customers. 

Pampered: Christian gets a blow dry. The lion lived in a huge basement in a pine furniture store, Sophisto-Cat, which Christian had to himself

Pampered: Christian gets a blow dry. The lion lived in a huge basement in a pine furniture store, Sophisto-Cat, which Christian had to himself

Pampered: Christian gets a blow dry. The lion lived in a huge basement in a pine furniture store, Sophisto-Cat, which Christian had to himself

Perhaps it wasn’t totally outrageous that a lion should be living among such a bohemian set.

Christian’s new home was everything we had hoped for: airy, with plenty of natural light and lots of space for a little cub to race around in, often dragging his favourite plastic pig.

With bedding, bones, toys and a large litter tray which he used assiduously after only a few days of encouragement, it was the perfect lion’s den.

Harrods supplied a detailed diet sheet: a liquid meal with raw egg and vitamins for breakfast, then raw meat — usually chopped beef or rabbit — for lunch and supper, and, as a special treat, a delicious marrow-filled bone at night.

Local restaurants and butchers offered steaks that were past their sell-by date, and cut-price meat.

Exercise soon became a concern. But where could we take him? The problem was solved by the vicar of the nearby church, who agreed to let us use its grounds just a few hundred yards from the shop. 

This sanctuary made an ideal playground, with a high entrance gate and brick walls. Residents of the flats that overlooked it would watch from their balconies and shout encouragement, waving and cheering as Christian raced around chasing footballs and — if we allowed him — us. We never received a complaint.

Friends would often come to join in. If Christian ever became too rough, we would just stand still and stop the game, and he quickly got the message.

Fleet Street photographer Derek Cattani became a regular visitor, and documented Christian’s Chelsea life.

We soon settled into a regular routine. The shop opened at 10am. By then Christian had been fed, enjoyed a ride in the car to the churchyard and returned home for a nap, leaving us to get on with running the shop.

At lunchtime he would be wide awake again and ready for his first meat meal. Then it was playtime in the den with anybody who was free to spend time with him. By the end of the afternoon Christian was ready for tea.

Christian attracts young admirers as he heads out in the Bentley. Celebrities began turning up. Diana Rigg had no qualms cuddling Christian, but her co-star in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Australian George Lazenby, did not live up to his 007 image and refused to enter the shop

Christian attracts young admirers as he heads out in the Bentley. Celebrities began turning up. Diana Rigg had no qualms cuddling Christian, but her co-star in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Australian George Lazenby, did not live up to his 007 image and refused to enter the shop

Christian attracts young admirers as he heads out in the Bentley. Celebrities began turning up. Diana Rigg had no qualms cuddling Christian, but her co-star in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Australian George Lazenby, did not live up to his 007 image and refused to enter the shop

He would then come up into the shop and wander happily around, often opting to sit on a table or chest of drawers in the window where he had a good view.

Celebrities began turning up. Diana Rigg had no qualms cuddling Christian, but her co-star in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Australian George Lazenby, did not live up to his 007 image and refused to enter the shop.

We were bombarded with requests to hire him for parties, premieres, publicity shots. To most of these we said no, though we did agree to a photoshoot with Vanity Fair, and one with racing driver James Hunt.

It was an invitation to appear on Blue Peter that brought an end to Christian’s career as a model. During a rehearsal, he behaved impeccably but by the time of the live appearance, he was bored.

Instead of a nice calm chat on the sofa with Valerie Singleton, the whole thing turned into a wrestling match as we tried to stop Christian from running off.

Ace and I decided such events were too stressful for him. He was not comfortable away from Sophisto-Cat or his churchyard. Christian was also now a year old and growing rapidly. Heartbreakingly, he would need a new home.

We began considering Longleat Safari Park. This was where some of the lions used in the hit movie Born Free — which told the story of how conservationists George and Joy Adamson had reintroduced Elsa, a hand-reared cub, into the wild in Africa — had been relocated.

Then a totally unexpected alternative arose. Actors Bill Travers and his wife Virginia McKenna, who had played George and Joy Adamson in the film, were visiting Virginia’s dressmaker, a neighbour of ours in Chelsea.

Christian tackles John during a game of football in the Moravian Close. Residents of the flats that overlooked it would watch from their balconies and shout encouragement, waving and cheering as Christian raced around chasing footballs 

Christian tackles John during a game of football in the Moravian Close. Residents of the flats that overlooked it would watch from their balconies and shout encouragement, waving and cheering as Christian raced around chasing footballs 

Christian tackles John during a game of football in the Moravian Close. Residents of the flats that overlooked it would watch from their balconies and shout encouragement, waving and cheering as Christian raced around chasing footballs 

They came to meet Christian, and asked what we were planning to do with him. We admitted we were still searching for the best solution.

A few days later, Bill rang with an idea. He had contacted George Adamson in Kenya to ask whether he would consider rehabilitating Christian there. The great lion guru had provisionally agreed.

It was a wonderful opportunity, but a challenge too. Take a fifth-generation captivity-bred lion, born in a zoo in Devon and then sold to us in a department store, to Africa? Could he adapt? And if he did, would he survive?

On August 12, 1970, Christian marked his first and last birthday in England. Two weeks later, with photographer Derek Cattani who had come to document the first stage of Christian’s rehabilitation, we touched down in Nairobi, on African soil. His ancestral homeland.

George Adamson was there to meet us. This was the man in whose hands Christian’s destiny now lay.

Together we set off in George’s jeep for the Kora reserve 250 miles away — Christian’s new home. When we stopped en route at a camp and took Christian for his first walk in Africa, an event of overwhelming significance occurred.

Christian spotted a lost cow in the bush and immediately crouched and froze. We watched as Christian stalked his prey — creeping slowly forward and using the low bushes to conceal himself. George was worried, though: the beast’s substantial horns could be lethal. 

We tried to grab Christian and, for the first time ever, he snarled at us. The episode shook us, but George was hugely impressed at his stalking instincts.

That night in camp Christian was wonderfully affectionate. Perhaps it was the excitement of his first stalking, or perhaps he was trying to make up for his earlier aggression. Either way, he dozed off with his head on a pillow and his paw on my face.

But we had learned what we most needed to know: our young lion was wild at heart. Everything would be all right.

In the summer of 1971, a year after Christian had become a wild animal, Ace and I returned to Kora to see George and, we hoped, glimpse our beloved lion.

When we called George from Nairobi he told us not to get our hopes up. Christian was now the head of a small pride — three females and a young male. George hadn’t seen them for weeks.

But when he met us at Kora he was grinning. 

‘The lions turned up this morning,’ he said. ‘Christian must have known you were coming.’

At his camp, George identified a spot for a reunion. He told us he would lead the lions to the brow of a rock, from where they could see me, Ace and a cameraman friend, Simon Trevor, who had been making a film about our story. After that, nobody knew what might happen.

As Christian crested the brow he stopped and stared at us. After a few minutes, he walked slowly down towards us, staring the whole time. He looked superb: taller, leaner and less thickly coated, but strong and confident.

His body language was self-assured as he approached. 

‘Call him,’ George said, unable to wait any longer.

And that did it: the moment he heard our voices Christian began to run down the rocky hillside, grunting with excitement. 

A 300lb lion was now bounding towards us at about 20 miles an hour. We braced ourselves for the impact and suddenly there he was, jumping up to greet us, rubbing our heads, moaning with pleasure and running backwards and forwards between us as he tried to embrace us both at the same time.

Wild at heart: A 300lb lion was now bounding towards us at about 20 miles an hour. We braced ourselves for the impact and suddenly there he was, jumping up to greet us, rubbing our heads, moaning with pleasure and running backwards and forwards between us as he tried to embrace us both at the same time

Wild at heart: A 300lb lion was now bounding towards us at about 20 miles an hour. We braced ourselves for the impact and suddenly there he was, jumping up to greet us, rubbing our heads, moaning with pleasure and running backwards and forwards between us as he tried to embrace us both at the same time

Wild at heart: A 300lb lion was now bounding towards us at about 20 miles an hour. We braced ourselves for the impact and suddenly there he was, jumping up to greet us, rubbing our heads, moaning with pleasure and running backwards and forwards between us as he tried to embrace us both at the same time

Today I look at the photos of that meeting and realise how overwhelmed I was by the powerful emotion. At that moment, the gulf between humans and lions had been blurred by sheer euphoria.

But that was not the end of the story. In 2006, the film of our reunion was spotted by an English actor named Marc Bolton, who was inspired to add a written narrative and a soundtrack using the Whitney Houston song I Will Always Love You.

Today there have been a staggering 100 million YouTube viewings of that brief clip, with interest showing no signs of abating. Christian is one of the most famous lions there has ever been.

It’s 45 years since, in 1973, Christian disappeared into the wild for ever, but some time later George heard him mating and was confident that he had established his own pride. 

Philip Mason, manager of a safari lodge near the Adamsons’ camp, often sees big-maned individuals that strongly resemble Christian. Could these be his descendants? Philip thinks so.

When Ace and I took Christian to Kenya in 1970, there were 400,000 lions in Africa. Today there are fewer than 20,000.

As the threat to Africa’s lions increases, we have much to be grateful to Christian for. 

The video gains him ever more fans and I pray it will continue to help raise awareness among new viewers, and the fight to save Christian’s descendants will gain momentum.

There could be no better legacy from a remarkable animal who continues to hold a unique place in our hearts.

Adapted from Christian The Lion: The Illustrated Legacy by John Rendall and Derek Cattani (Bradt, £14.99). © John Rendall & Derek Cattani 2018. 

To order a copy for £11.99 (offer valid to November 15, 2018, p&p free on orders over £15), visit mailshop.co.uk/books or call 0844 571 0640. To donate to the George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust visit georgeadamson.org/donate

 

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link