Monday, December 26, 2011

morning visitors

This morning I was doing some writing in my little house, enjoying the cool temperatures. (It's academic writing. I know--boring--but consider my global perspective: I'm writing an article for an American journal in Africa about a Japanese writer!) I had my door open and most of the windows.

Then I heard a little squeak—then another, and another, and I looked over at my door to find a herd of mongooses (yes, it’s mongooses, not mongeese) coming to visit. Since Pickles had gone running off with Marieta this morning (she got tired of waiting at the cheetah enclosure for me to exit), it was the perfect day to have these guests (dogs and mongooses—not a good match). Plus, they eat bugs of all kinds, so I love to let them houseclean for me.

Between 10 and 15 of the little creatures (about the size of a ferret) came in and spread out through my house. They’re very curious and have to get into everything. Some went into my closet and explored, others went under my bed and scratched at something. A few went into the bathroom and were picking at the toilet bowl brush. And then a few of them went behind the cupboards in the kitchen and got into the shelves.

One got stuck there and started squeaking pretty loud, so I had to open the cupboard door and let him out. As long as I stayed quiet at my table, they weren’t scared of me. If I moved, stood up, or made too much noise, they all went streaking out the door like creatures fleeing from a fire. Then they would creep back in.

They stayed for about 30 minutes, and then they heard the volunteers calling them with their breakfast meat—“Brrrrrrrrrr, brrrrrrrrr, brrrrrrrrr.” The scampered off and I was left with a bug-free house for now.

You just never know what’s going to happen here at Harnas.


  1. I couldn't figure out what they were at first. The only mongoose I've seen,was the cartoon one in Riki Tiki Tavi (remember that?)