Leaping Lizards and Electric Fly Swatters

5 09 2012

You learn to live with the fact that there is very different wildlife issues here in Africa.  Now I am in a large city working on the last few details to getting my visa in hand and launching out.  So you would think that the animal issues would be rather minor and that is true.  In Kenya we did have to chase the monkeys away to pick cherries, but the lizards were docile and cute.  Here in Tanzania, not so much.  On my last visit I learned to share the “choo” or outdoor toilet with as many as 5 lizards that we would call huge by American standards.  These 18” fat  lizards resembled Iguanas except they were brilliant in color and that means colors as bright as pink and electric blue, sometimes on the same lizard.  So much for blending in with the environment. The only place they could “blend in” would be a “head shop” in the 1970’s.

I am struggling with a new breed of lizard and now these small and sneaky mosquitoes.  But I have my electric tennis racket zapper.  Right from China this device looks like a cheap tennis racket with a type of Nike shwoosh on it.  Instead of being covered in cat gut, or what ever type of string we use now days on our tennis rackets, this evil little weapon has wire mesh.  You flick a switch and watch out.  This high powered beauty will literally ignite a mosquito, no matter how small into an inferno of bug matter that resembles a flaming comet as it launches across the room.  Why if you were 7 years old you could have a ball running around the back yard in the banana trees zapping everything in sight.  Not that I have done that mind you.  But one can dream.

Last night on my way to the choo in a stretch of the veranda leading to that area that is well lit,  I noticed some decent sized lizards.  But, no worries,  we have a kind of don’t ask don’t tell thing going one here.  We basically ignore each other.  Besides these lizards are smaller.  Just as I was approaching the door to the choo this little dude launches right at me.  I could not believe the little dude was going to attack me in the middle of the night for seemingly simply walking past him.  Before I had hardly the time to react he had somehow NOT landed on me and had returned to the wall he launched from with a huge ugly moth in his mouth.  Evidently I was being shadowed by this huge winged beast and the lizard simply could not pass up the opportunity.  Even though to the uninitiated ,the leap at me, an innocent bystander, was clearly a breach in our unspoken but clearly understood peace agreement.  This threatening action, while now  justified by the actual capture of the moth, a creature not covered under said treaty, reminds me of how tenuous and fragile my imaginary truce with nature can be.  I will keep this in mind when I am closer to the Serengeti where the truce between me and carnivores is not defined and may  need special consideration.

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3 responses

6 09 2012
Alice

I think it will indeed need special consideration! LOL! I know all will go well with your visa. God did not take you that far to leave you. All will be well. My grandmother who lived on a farm had an “outhouse”, but there was no way I would have walk ther at night. The day was awful enough. LOL! Remember to email Bill when you get settled in. He may be of some help to you. Take care and sleep well tonight!

6 09 2012
Jeff Patrick

This makes those late night and early trips to the choo much more exciting, instead of cracking your little toe on the corner of a table or the leg of a chair. It seems that I saw in a movie called “Parent Trap” that you can hit two sticks together as you walk and that will keep most pest away… lol

6 09 2012
vfr5

I need one of those fly swatters for my next trip there. LOL! It seems as if all is going well for you. This means that someone organized your agenda well. Praise God for this. The conventions here are in a vicious battle. LOL! I pray that God’s will be done in this election. Take good care of yourself and pray for America!

On Wed, Sep 5, 2012 at 11:37 PM, WordPress.com

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