Monkey Sanctuary

I’ll leave it to Rob to write about burst pipes in the deep freeze of a Toronto winter, and the generosity and kindness of neighbours and friends (Andrew, Jackie, Boyd, you know who you are). Instead, a word simply to note our brief escape from the city, here on the other side of the planet, for a night away, with dinner and breakfast, at The Cradle Hotel and Restaurant in the Magaliesberg.

Accommodations, in a beautifully designed and modern, minimalist log cabin, were excellent; dinner gained mixed reviews (we suspect it was a skeleton staff for the holidays, and whoever composed the gloppy roquefort salad should either be properly trained or be fired) while breakfast, out on the sunny deck of the restaurant, with three giraffe visible through the binoculars deep in the valley beyond us, beneath some trees, was sustaining and sufficient.

On we went, at Rob’s suggestion, to the Monkey Sanctuary, where a knowledgeable and patient guide led us along a wooden walkway between trees and cliffs, including not one but two suspension bridges, and introduced us to the simian population.

Of the many photos I took, these seem to me the most worth sharing. I’ve tried, in presenting these images, to avoid the obvious pitfalls of sentiment and anthropomorphism, but I did want, if possible, to show the animals as individuals, and to give a sense of their own particular intelligence, not to mention their extraordinary agility and possession of their environment.