Sunday, May 04, 2008

morning again

It’s dusk and a small troupe of howlers has moved into the cecropia and guacimo trees for the night. I can see their silhouettes against the darkening sky. They’re hanging by their tails picking off the fluffy flowers of the guacimo and the large umbrella type cecropia leaves. The cecropia has nectaries at the base of each leaf to reward the ants who make the tree their home. I think this is what the monkeys like, they never seem to eat the whole leaf. I’m rather sorry they are in these trees – they got hit hard by a sloth last week and have only a few leaves left. One tree in particular seems to be constantly on the verge of being picked bare – it must produce more nectar, I wonder if it will learn? The guacimo has the most delicious scent, a truly floral smell, fresh and light and only arrives in pulses. The kind of scent you’d want to chase. The flowers are visited by streams of black butterflies in the morning. I like this tree, it has a very soft, fine feathery foliage but the trunk is bare and somewhat similar to eucalyptus. It reminds me of the marvelous Guanacaste tree. I lived in a Guanacaste tree for 9 months, I loved that tree. It’s too dark now to make out the monkeys, I can just see movement in the branches and hear the low chatter of mothers and infants. Ah yes, it’s too dark – the fireflies have just switched on their lights. Behind me a bat buzzes my green bananas. Some cheeky bat came into the kitchen two nights ago and ate big holes out of the ripe bananas I had foolishly left on the countertop. I do like them though, somehow I always feel comforted by their presence. Beside me two dogs lie sprawled on the deck, they’ve just stopped itching their mosquito bites and are patiently awaiting dinner.
I wish I could record the sounds I hear: in the background the steady crash of ocean against shore; somwhere to the east the occasional rumble of thunder; a low last call of a bird; crickets; katydids; geckoes; the buzzing of a mosquito; some rasping noise; another similar but higher pitched; the bark of a frog from the other end of the garden; the tweet of a tree frog somewhere nearby; rustling of branches . . . the list seems endless and loses a lot in the writing I’m afraid. I have a friend who tries to count all the different night noises when he can’t sleep, he has counted as high as 40. There is constant noise and when one tunes into it it is deafening.