Sunday 9:40 am
First off, Happy Birthday
Liz had wanted to go over into Gisenyi today, but I decided after last night that I really wanted to spend my last day with the chimps, and nowhere else. I spent from 6:30 am on with them this morning, and then the last 30 minutes packing all my worldly goods.
Last night was sort of incredible, and I've been filled with this additional reverence for the relationships I've formed here. I put the chimps to bed -- Okeysha and Kanabiro -- and Kanabiro uncharacteristically fell asleep right away, nestled into my arm. Okeysha, intent on still being important, curled into my back. So I was a Sleeping Chimpanzee Sandwich.
I felt so happy, so intoxicated with the smell of chimpanzee (which thankfully masked the smell of urine on the mattress) that I had Liz go get my camera so that I could capture the moment forever. I worry how "professional" my copious picture taking is, and what she'd think of it, but at that moment, I didn't care and knew I'd regret it if I didn't get the shot.
This morning was really nice -- Etaito is still determined to act as bad as possible while Liz is here, tormenting and biting her. She and I got our belly beads at the same time, and she'd managed to keep her strands all through Cameroon. Mine have been the only jewelry I've worn this entire time here, and, although my pants falling down exposes them and the chimps have grabbed them from time to time, I'd managed to keep my little memento of my first week in Uganda.
Anyway, Etaito almost
got them today, and when I scolded him, he bit me hard. Ha! Goodbye, sucker! [says he]
What's fun though is to see how much they've all learned and changed since I arrived. I always play this game with him where I blow air into his mouth right after I've brushed my teeth. He likes the smell, but today, I blew on him, and he blew back. He'd never done that before! I was so thrilled and proud that I squished him in a big hug.
Liz has actually been nice to have around, and, eating at Lebanese together two nights in a row, Primus has definitely lubricated our friendship. I'm still wary, but I'm really amazed and pleased with how well it's all gone. I mean, we're sharing a teensy tiny room, and I'm sleeping on the couch, and things could
be just awful. But they're not, and it makes me happy.
I cracked up today when Etaito dangled from one of the ropes we have up and hung there, peeing onto the ground 2 feet below. Very smart!!
I will spend the rest of the day playing now that I'm packed, too. And taking MORE photos, of course. I feel really at peace.