Awakening a Keen Observer

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Travel Memory

While we were traveling this summer we stopped on the island of Bali at the Monkey Park. Apparently it was a very popular place but, to be honest, I'm not THAT fond of monkeys, especially running around without a cage. You were told to keep anything that could be lifted, pen, camera, watch, keys, safe as these monkeys were bold and might just lift them from you and run off.
I voted, with myself, and stayed in the Van. It was a nice moment to put my feet up and relax for a few...
wait a minute....
what is that...
jumping and running around that tree right in front of the van?
Yup. Monkey.
It sat about 2 feet high. Right there! I mean right there outside the OPEN front window in the van. I was in the second row seat, I could look down on this monkey's head. John had taken the camera to get a picture I could see and here was a monkey...oh so close. Way too close. I hoped that it would not just jump into the van because there was fruit on the front seat. The door was at my outstretched feet not someplace I could just jump out if it jumped in.

Then something else got my attention.
A column of marching people who were all dressed up.
There were probably about 60 or so who went by and then the ones who carried the casket and another 60 people. It was a funeral procession. Not in cars but walking, with sober faces. The casket was small, perhaps a child. They marched by.

I looked out the window and about that moment the monkey lept up onto the hood of the van and onto a nearby tree and took off. You could see his footprint on the car.

The group returned. The driver, who had stayed behind with the van, said to the returning people, "Did you see the funeral procession?" They had not. He looked at me and I said, "yes".

Monkeys swayed from the tress all along the road for another 1/2 mile or so but the funeral is what I remembered.
Grief speaks all languages--- no translation needed.

But then again... so does joy.

God abides
Bobbie Giltz McGarey


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