May proved a very difficult month for us, with the baby Faye taking up all our time and energy, days of elation when she was doing well, followed by despair when she didn’t make it. We gave her all our love and attention, and did not let her suffer, but are so sad that she is gone.
Of course, now the monsoon has arrived in full force and with very few volunteers or help until September, keeping all the resident monkeys amused and entertained is our priority. It’s at this time of year that the donated toys are most appreciated, the monkeys get as fed up as the humans just watching the torrential rains, so we have to try and think up new and interesting things for them to do, with the toys, bamboo, and empty water bottles.
Raj is ever hopeful that someone will arrive to give him that extra attention, but he now transfers some of that to Katrina, who shares his pen. She is usually pretty much ignored by him, in favour of any human being, but he is now seen to be grooming her far more often, as some compensation for absent human friends, so at least she is getting a benefit!
The market fruit and vegetable collections need to go on just the same, but in deep mud. Just the more exotic items imported for the tourists are now absent, such as iceberg lettuce, calabrese and imported fruits, but the abundance of mangoes and pineapples etc is good compensation.
The rains bring out all the local frogs and toads into the open, after the even more abundant insects. In turn, this brings out the snakes, to eat them.
There is no rodent problem in the house, with 22 cats in residence, but they don’t chase or eat the nasty tasting frogs, so at night particularly, walking across the floor, they hop away from you as you go, and it seems every cupboard opened has one inside. Cleaning out one kitchen cupboard, revealed a very large recently shed snake skin, the snake had thankfully moved on, but how many times however, had hands reached in there, to take out something during its residence! It had clearly slithered in through the gas pipe hole.
Kochi , the youngest macaque, doesn’t like the rain any more that the others, but at the end of his evening trip into the house for games and cuddles, he has quickly learned that when it is time to go back ,this will only happen in a rain break, and so he peacefully sleeps, seemingly oblivious to all, until there is a lull, then he is ready to go, the fact that he gets extra “home time” peanuts helps of course.