Jungle Fever


I live in a tropical jungle.

During warm nights, when the moon is waxing, the grunts and croaks of tree frogs and pond toads fill the air; the froggy serenade vibrating in the purple darkness. I used to mind the noise, but lately, i tend to worry if the frogs are not performing any nocturnal concerts.

Each morning, I wake to the song of birds, the cackles of chicken, an army of chicks, and a proud rooster. And when I open a window, I see the blaze of a young Sun, slowly birthing itself up, up in the sky. Faith and I would sit by the window, saying good morning to the whole creation — the plants, trees, the passing gecko, and the ants that march pass us on the window sill.

There are snakes that bask out on rocks that line the path to my cottage. There was this time when I tried to scare a small one away; it was stretched right across my path. I tried stomping my foot and even went as far as getting the cat (who is a very good snake and mice catcher), who was lazily dozing by the stove, and placing it near where the snake was, hoping my cat would chase away the reptile. Reptile and mammal both ignored each other. The cat just sat there, grooming itself while the snake continued lying there, oblivious to anything around it.

Dogs howl in the middle of the night for various reasons.

Bamboo groves abound in my surroundings. I now know what is the real sound of the bamboo. It is when the wind whistles through these giant grasses, making the pliant trunks sway and bump against each other, and music is produced. There is no human-made instrument equivalent of the music produced by the wind and the bamboos in concert.

Centipedes, millipedes, scorpions all have a place in the cracks and crevices of the rocks and tree trunks around the property.


Moths and butterflies of all color seem to congregate on the flowers nurtured by Tata. A pink moth (pictured above) was photogenic and accommodating enough to allow me to take a picture of her when she landed on the living room floor.

There are bugs the size of my fist, and when we we were still building the cottages, I was really scared of the jumbo-sized grasshoppers that try to land on the candles that we used for illuminating the place.

The frond roof of my cottage is home to arachnids and rodents, who have tiny worlds of their own.

Bees and wasps build their nests right over head; one just have to be careful not to wear strong-smelling cologne or perfume, but during these insects’ migration, we just tend to avoid getting in their way.

The moon looks nearer from 1000plus feet above sea level, and the stars are brighter as well.

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Because of the fertile soil, flowering plants grow in profusion and bloom with amazing displays of colors.


Sometimes, when the conditions are right for it, the clouds come down from the sky. Silvery fog casts a blanket over everything that is familiar in the surroundings, muting sounds and softening sharp edges. Sometimes, when the fog is really thick, you can’t see anything before, beside, or behind you. If you sprinkle it with a little fearful imagination, then you have the makings for Silent Hill, hehehe.

I live happily here — close to nature, close to creation, close to the wonders of the Creator’s work.


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