Man and his big lion buddy hug it out (VIDEO)

Aug 27, 2014 at 6:55 p.m. ET

Jonathan Hawkins, a teacher who lives in Korea, loves cats

I mean, he really loves cats. In fact, he's got a bond with them like few others alive. During a recent trip to Botswana, he had a friend record a pow-wow he shared with one of the lions with whom he shares a special bond to prove that he wasn't joking around.

Fast forward to the 18-second mark to get the really good stuff right away. Hawkins fumbles with his keys while making small talk with the young lion who is clearly so pumped to see his friend again. Once the gate is open — bam! Like a kid fresh out of day care, the lion leaps into Hawkins's arms. You can practically hear that song At Last playing in the background to underscore their deep affection for each other. Totally unbelievable and totally awesome.

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