Saturday, April 19, 2008

Rainbows and Geckos

After living in a tropical place for over a decade, one begins to take their exotic surroundings for granted. Basically you just stop noticing what is around you. And that is a pity.

That's why it's great to host a variety of guests from around the world, who inevitably help you see your world through fresh eyes.

Today we toured Accra with a visitor from Switzerland. He was enamored and amazed by the critters that run alongside us daily. I actually never think of them, but it made me realise that the geckos and rainbow lizards that run by our feet and hang out on our bathroom ceilings are actually pretty cool, exotic and interesting.
The geckos are quite shy guys, hiding behind doors and quietly ridding us of the many ants, cockroaches and miscellaneous insects that crawl endlessly through the house. The sad thing is that these little geckos, sometimes almost transparent and quite prone to being startled, are no match for the 2 inch roaches that come out at night. In fact, the ants too outnumber the geckos exponentially. If they could eat all the ants they'd be monsters, but somehow the ants just seem to have it more together. Perhaps it's the strength in numbers. They are guaranteed to take over the kitchen each night and can be found feasting on any spilled food... even the tiniest blob or crumb...

The geckos are also quite unlucky little creatures - they always seem to get caught in a door slamming or a drawer closing. Cut right in half most of the time.. not a pretty sight. Their tales do grow back though, if accidentally chopped off by an inconsiderate human...

The rainbow lizards on the other hand are quite fast, bold and animated. They spend most of the time doing push ups and they don't like to come indoors. They will however be tempted by a morsel of food, if you're sitting out on any patio having a cold beer.. Their bright orange heads are great - some are so bright they look flourescent.

We don't need to go to the zoo or the exotic pet store... our home is a welcome ecosystem for all these things to grow and flourish - whether we like it or not really.

And there are really some residents we'd rather do without...

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