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"Will You Teach Me To Speak English?"   Cultural Exchange - Costa Rica

“Will You Teach Me To Speak English?” Cultural Exchange – Costa Rica

Companions come in many forms, and some people often misunderstand my choice not to have a domesticated animal as a pet.  A free spirit, I travel too often, and it seems insensitive to delegate the care of an animal to someone else when I am absent.   I have the option of distant friendships with companions of the wild.  Enjoy many of the creatures that have watched over me during my time in Central and South America! 

Finishing my last-day respite here in Mindo Ecuador, I’ve enjoyed the service of fast internet!  After today I will be in transit back to the riverhouse, where the companionship of nature awaits.  I will also return to sluggish cyber connections!

See more posts about companions on the Weekly Photo Challenge/Companionable.

 

The foliage thief nibbled himself too fat to return through the fence!

BUSTED! – The foliage thief nibbled himself too fat to return through the fence!

I knew that SOMETHING was eating the Swiss chard, but the thief ate so much that he got caught in the chicken-wire fence on his way out!

Little Bit guarded the jasmine near the front door!

Little Bit guarded the jasmine near the front door!

Big Red sought asylum my house;  he was pretty big for an iguana!

Big Red sought asylum my house; he was pretty big for an iguana!

You’re probably weary of seeing iguanas… How about cute little frogs? This one guarded the jasmine as well!

He might be smiling, and he might be my prince, but I ain't gonna kiss him!

He might be smiling, and he might be my prince, but I ain’t gonna kiss him!

Ok… You probably didn’t care for the frog or the iguanas, but they make amazing models for my whimsical art!

Custom floor - palm y zeeguana2

Zeeguana!  (Watercolor)

Zeeguana! (Watercolor)

Zeebra frogs often hop into the picture!

Zeebra frogs often hop into the picture!

Let’s move to something prettier… like butterflies!   When working on this watercolor, I was in dire need of a dead or alive ‘in-hand’ model.  I walked outside, looked down, and there was a (dead) butterfly species I had never seen!

How great of a gift was that?!!! True happy shoes!

How great of a gift was that?!!! True happy shoes!

Butterflies are always special, but not if they defoliate the balcony’s crop of maracuya!

"Ok.. Let's Baptize them with Lemon-Grass & Garlic Tea!"

“Ok.. Let’s Baptize them with Lemon-Grass & Garlic Tea!”

CHRYSALIS FINISHE 07
CHRYSALIS FINISHED 05

CHRYSALIS FINISHE 08

CHRYSALIS FINISHED 01

CHRYSALIS FINISHED 00

After that magic hour, I forgave those caterpillars for desiccating the passion-fruit crop!

How cute!  What is it?!

How cute! What is it?!

I will never forget my first encounter with this precious spotted petite animal. Imagine my horror when I found its image in a wildlife guide: a spotted skunk!

Sometimes different species seem to visit for their last day on earth; though I have been unable to help them, I give them empathy.

This baby bird appeared in the house - unfortunately it died that night.

This baby bird appeared in the house – unfortunately it died that night.

This one appeared to spend its last day with me...

This one appeared to spend its last day with me…

A snake died in the yard… with qualms, I present that one as well. Perhaps he was there to remind me to watch out for snakes?!

The rustle of leaves prompted a closer look.

The rustle of leaves prompted a closer look.

A victim of hit and run, this snake sought solace in the yard and died soon after.

A victim of hit and run, this snake sought solace in the yard and died soon after.

The locals called the above snake a ‘mata caballo.’  The assured me that it was not dangerous.  Any snake with a name that suggests it can kill a horse makes me cautious!   I realize there are many more snakes that do not spook me; the following one fascinated me, as it mimicked the branches where it searched for prey.

Now THIS is a snake that I like!  What stealth!

Now THIS is a snake that I like! What stealth!

For every monkey that soars through the trees, there's a snake that creeps through the foliage with stealth!

For every monkey that soars through the trees, there’s a snake that creeps through the foliage with stealth!

snake vine snake

Which is real and which is a snake?

Which is real and which is a snake?

And there was the snake that recently inspected the work on the magic carpet!

A surprise visitor sneaked into the studio to get a sneak peek at the artwork!

A surprise visitor sneaked into the studio to get a sneak peek at the artwork!

Ok; Barb and I learned to close the bodega door! Enough of snakes.. here are some ‘softer’ animals of the wild!

Variagated Squirrel - Costa Rica

Variagated Squirrel – Costa Rica

My greatest love is for the howler monkeys, that watched over me during my time in Costa Rica.

Quite at ease, this on often loiters very near where I worked.

Quite at ease, this one often loitered very near where I worked.

At night they often slept in the canopy above my roof, and in the pre-dawn awakening hours, they often howled until I peered outside and acknowledged their presence!   “Good morning!  Buenos Dias!  Ummmmph-ummmmph, ummmmph,” I would greet!

If one looks up, many times the howlers are quietly observing.

If one looks up, many times the howlers are quietly observing.

06 CR howlers MOTHER Y BABE

"...Thanks for stopping by;  see you again soon! ..."

“…Thanks for stopping by; see you again soon! …”

With that, they would hush, and we either stared at each other for half an hour, or I would return inside and start my day!

Other mornings they would leave quietly, but almost always they returned at the end of each day and watched over with a territorial and protective eye!  They taught me many nuances of their unique language, and I am grateful for their lessons and for their trust!

monkey 02 earth - monkey grrr up

The young one was accepting, but the parent was quite alarmed! “Don’t trust that gringa,” it seemed to say!

Who's There?

Who’s There?

If only all species were so accepting!

Have a good weekend, everyone!

Z

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