I'm sure anyone with kids would have watched Over the Hedge produced by Dreamworks summer (if my memory serves me right) last year. What I'm about to reveal in this posting is Over the Hedge, the Zooview chapter!
Where we live is an old suburb (about approximately 30 years in existence) but is now surrounded by new developments which we once thought would be left as the city's green lung because the National Zoo is literally our neighbour. Before the hills adjacent to ours were raped by unscrupulous and moolah-minded developers, we lived peacefully alongside nature and the wildlife co-existed in harmony. Yes we do get snakes slithering through the house may be once a year (the last time was a couple months back); we had a slow loris moving about in our master bedroom, some years back, mistakenly thought as a panda by my then 4 year old boy, Yusof while wifey and I were having dinner at a restaurant some 45 minutes' drive from home and later caught by our dear neighbours and good friends Chr*s and Cha* Yi* and put in our rabbits' cage which we later surrendered to the zoo; an injured wild fox resting on our backyard pergola; tiny orange frogs leaping in our open-air-in-a-garden kitchen; countless of toads in our bathrooms; muti-cloured dragon flies and butterflies in the house etc etc....(apparently there are wild boars too which we have not seen with our own eyes). This is what you get when you want to be close to nature! That's the choice that we made! I don't find it disturbing at all since this is what nature is all about...My philosophy has always been, if you don't disturb them, they'll reciprocate (superwomanwannabe :- you may disagree)!
Look what happened when the hills were barren in the name of progress and development - the landslide which killed a couple of people last year near our house is a testament to nature disturbed and nature retaliated....!Whoops this posting is getting a bit serious which is not my intention...
So you might ask, what's the relevance of Over the Hedge?
When we first moved to Zooview some 7 years ago, we could open our windows and sliding doors all the time letting fresh air in and watching monkeys swinging from trees to trees trees around the housing estate without any disturbance.... Like I said, we co-existed in harmony!
The problem started a few years back when all the surrounding hills were developed in to housing estates...The monkeys lost their natural habitat and obviously are trapped within the concrete jungles created by us. The nearest green lung is our housing estate because our area is the oldest housing estate which is surrounded by matured trees. What happened in Over the Hedge is an exact duplicate of our lives now...The monkeys run amok whenever they are hungry and steal our food!
A couple of years back, they only rummaged through what's edible in our garbage bins... In recent times, they even have become more daring entering into homes when the inhabitants are out of sight or not at home.
Over the weekend wifey wanted to bake banana muffins using flowerinthedesert's recipe or halwafy's recipe (she can't remember she got the recipe from which blog but definitely from either the two) over the weekend. Much to her horror when she came back to bake - all her bananas were gone....None other than the monkey's job! There went our banana muffins for the weekend. The monkeys at Zooview have acquired quite good taste....If there are other fruits placed together with bananas like kiwi fruits, apples, mangoes etc....they'd pick the latter than their staple food! Last Eid, they even took the nicest cookies of the lot which were the pineapple tarts made by my step grandmom.They took the whole glass jar of tarts with them!
Last December was the worst attack so far. My daughter forgot to close one of her windows and we were away for the whole day for my cousin's wedding. When we got back - the whole house smelt urine and monkey pooh....They had a gala time the whole day in our house feasting our food - bread and fruits. When the food ran out, they emptied my organic soy powder can and sprinkled them all over the house - even the piano keyboard was not spared; traces of their feet were all over the keyboard! There wifey was with the maid cleaning the mess......
I can go on and on about Zooview monkeys....I think you have gotten the picture!