Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Vervet Monkey Sanctuary

Return to the Vervet Monkey Sanctuary - Da Da Da!

On the 27th Aug we went back to the monkey sanctuary. Primarily this was to build a pond in the new enclosure but it was also to show Claudia (new volunteer) what the place was like. On the way there we bumped into one of Mitch's old friends who invited us all out to a local Africaan pub. So that night we went to 'On the rocks' a pub/restaurant near the vervet sanctuary.

On arrival we were met by the sound of live music eminating from the open air bar. Music which turned out to be duelling harmonicas - the place would be best described as slightly red-necked. The only women other than Claudia and Juliet (a monkey sanctuary volunteer who we rescued for the night) were Mitch's friend's wife and the owners wife. After the live music we were entertained by one of the harmonica players as he put on his Kevin Blady Wilson CD and then sang along to songs such as:

Santa ya c£$t wheres me f"£king bike
D.I.L.L.I.G.A.F (Do I look like I give a F£$k!)
Stick ya f"£King phone up your f"£king ass
and the clasic
Do ya f"£k on first dates, (Does your dad own a brewery)

I got him to place them all on my USB pen for downloading later!

Then it was time for food. We were all asked what we would like to eat (That is T-Bone steak and chips alright for everyone) Claudia told them she was a vegetarian which prompted the initial reply "oh so you want chicken" then after checking what they had they came back and asked her if she ate fish. Eventually she got pizza and some salad.

After dinner (which was really good - and paid for by Mitch;s friend!) we were inticed with an after dinner shot of sambucca. Except for Mitch and his friend nobody else drank the shots so I had to step up to the plate and drank the rest of them (it was my duty after all). Nick who is an 18 year old american and has never had a drink had a "springbok" a concoction of amorohla and creme de menthe. Next morning he had a hang-over and puked up - welcome to alcohol Nick!

Finally once our food had settled everyone started dancing - to country music (I nearly puked at this point!) Nick and Juliet (both yanks) started line dancing. At one point I joined in by doing some of my badly attempted Irish dancing (arms by side and legs flinging around like I was having an epileptic fit). After a while we were able to decide what to play on the juke box (the juke box being the harmonica player's laptop) and found some reasonably decent music. This prompted some of the other punters to start dancing. I should point out that all white South Africans seem to wear shorts all the time - obvious enough for a hot country but some of them wear really short shorts and some of them just should not be allowed to wear shorts - like the "stout" guy who started dancing and trying to feel Juliets ass.

Eventually it was time to go back to our tents at the monkey sanctuary. All in all it was a great nights entertainment.

The next day we built the pond (or rather stood around watching Mitch's workers build the pond). Apparently vervet monkeys love to swim and Mitch is determined that the monkeys in his enclosure have as much water as they want. The water situation for the monkeys in the sanctuary is not good. In the large enclosures there are drip taps that the monkeys can use themselves but for the ones in the cramped cages (some of them are stuck in bird cages!) they only get a drink of water twice a day. They are not given bowls. It must be torture for them. Claudia could not wait to get out of the place. Thankfully after the pond was finished that was exactly what we did.

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