February 19, 2011

A Monkey in the Moment

It seems like the getting-to-know-Barra phase has evolved into settling in. We have a standing order with the French Baker (I even got a rose on Valentine’s thanks to our regular patronage), a favourite beach, we know where to get great tacos, and where to find our groceries, and we’ve even figured out how to crash the local posh resort for a swim in the pool. In other words; it’s time to move on…
 I realized this yesterday at the beach. The kids were having a blast, body surfing and digging holes (what is it with kids and dogs that they have such a driving need to dig?). I was as relaxed as I get—sitting under my umbrella, pondering Captain Cook, occasionally laughing at the kid's crazy antics. Ann from Hanacrew was thumbing through my Lonely Planet Mexico guide, planning their next adventure (Morelia) while I was daydreaming about ours (Moorea).
 It’s becoming harder and harder to stay in this moment. Our thoughts are straying across the Pacific well ahead of our boat. And while the books I read and websites I visit are all about the South Pacific, we’re still here, in Barra. The thing is it becomes even more difficult to stay present once a place gets familiar. No matter how cool a spot it is, and how much it has to offer, it’s easy to get distracted and restless and dream only about getting gone.
 From the beach last night we headed to a fundraiser dinner the Sands Hotel. It’s the local cruiser’s hangout with a pool, cheap happy hour drinks, and, it turns out, an unusual mascot.

“Mum!! Dad!! The monkey stole my potato!!” Maia yelled as she raced up to us. I’m not sure how you react to stuff like this, but I just shrugged and told her she’d have to tell her unlikely story to the dinner’s organizers and ask for a new one. Evan, being the more imaginative parent, went to see who exactly had stolen her food and came face to face with a spider monkey.
 Somehow we’ve spent almost three weeks here and never noticed the monkey, despite the fact we walk past him every day. And somehow, this very simple realization reeled my thoughts back in from across the Pacific and planted them firmly back in Barra.

We’re not leaving Mexico for more than a month. And if I keep dreaming about being gone, I might miss the monkey. Literally.


Behan said...

OMG- it's Chacho! At least, that's what the older guy told us. Be careful- he bites. But he's also a charmer who will pull a banana out of your pocket... ask me how I know. :-)

Diane, Evan, Maia and Charlie the cat said...

We were told his name is Chacho too:)
He is quite the pickpocket. His tail went right into Meri's bag yesterday--no doubt looking for Bananas...

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