Tuesday, 19 December 2006

The sometimes timid

When the Monarto Zoo opened between Adelaide and Murray Bridge in South Australia, it was quite a different establishment from the Adelaide Zoo.

The Adelaide Zoo saw your typical caged exhibits. The animals were fairly close together with only one or two of each species per cage. Scattered between the exhibits , with gardens which provided shade and comfort to the visitors.

Monarto Zoo is in the proximity of the tiny Murray Mallee town of Monarto. The animals are not caged, as such, rather the animals live in large grounds enclosed by fences; often with several other species pr enclosure.

Visitors to the zoo, tour around the exhibits on bus, mostly, and this way, the zoo has ample room for a larger number of the one species and visitors can get reasonably close to the animals. At least while in the safety of a vehicle.

When Monarto Zoo first opened, some of the animals in the traditional small cage zoo, were transferred to the relatively spacious surrounds of the Monarto Zoo. One of these animals was the elephant.

For the first couple of weeks... or was it months.. the elephant still hadn't emerged from her tiny shelter, afraid or perhaps unaware that the space outside her house was in fact all for her to roam and explore as she pleased.

After a considerable time she finally did get a bit curious and ventured hesitantly out of her confined surroundings; almost overwhelmed by her apparent freedom.

She was seen walking all around her vast enclosure and appeared rather happy with her new home; so happy, that she let out a thunderous trumpet of glee from her previously mute trunk. The sound was such, that her joy reached out across neighbouring pastures and echoed off some low hills nearby.

The elephant, expressing herself in such a way, a way she had not heard for an eternity, or perhaps ever, was so strange and startling to her that she bounded back in fear, to the safety of her tiny confines, where she remained for many more weeks; too timid and confused to emerge.

Sometimes I feel like that elephant.


Catherine said...

My default personality is much like the elephant as well. I don't know how you feel about it, but The Blog really has helped me to acquaint myself with my own voice.

strauss said...

Yes I agree whole heartedly. Thank you for your kind comments, and the happiest of seasonal greetings to you also.