On my first day in Lesotho — a hardscrabble, high-altitude kingdom in sub-Saharan Africa — the security guard at my government-run lodgings shook my hand and held on too long. After several awkward seconds, I clumsily took my hand back.
Later that night, around 10 p.m., I awoke to someone rattling the door handle of my rondavel — a round stone hut with a thatched roof. I reached for my heavy Nikon preparing to defend myself but, luckily, the door stayed locked. Every hour or so after that, I heard someone pacing outside. In the morning, I reported the incidents.
“It was probably the security guard,” a female employee suggested.
When I asked that the guard be...