May is synonymous with the celebration of spring, dancing round Maypoles, exchanging flowers for kisses, that sort of thing. But not in Australia. It’s not spring here; it’s the last month of autumn, and Melbourne is overcast and sombre.
This image on my calendar, however, is delightfully frivolous enough to distract me from the gloomy aspect beyond my window. Who has ever ridden a zebra you might wonder? In fact, it can be done and has been done. The first doctor in Kenya used a zebra to convey him on house calls in 1907.
Perhaps the artist, André-Edouard Marty, was inspired by the real-life adventures of the American documentary filmmakers Martin and Osa Johnson. This intrepid couple travelled on safari between 1917 and 1936, capturing the public’s imagination with titles such as Among the Cannibal Isles of the South Seas (1918), Jungle Adventures (1921) and Osa’s Four Years in Paradise (1941).
I doubt very much that Osa ever wore an evening gown on zebraback though…
Happy May to you!