Flora and Fauna

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March 22nd 2015
Published: March 22nd 2015
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The flowers that grow around here are so beautiful that the hotel staff pick them daily to decorate the bathrooms, bedrooms and restaurant. No other decoration is needed. A row of hot pink bougainvilleas grow outside our house, perfectly framing the view to the sea. Frangipanis drop from the trees, and we collect them as we walk home to put decoratively around the house. They die in a day or so, but we appreciate their beauty (and delicious perfume) for a few hours at least. The frangipani flowers are either pink or waxy white, with five slim petals whorling out from egg-yolk yellow centres. The shampoos and perfumes that they are made into smell almost as good as the flowers - it is worth plunging your nose between the petals to drink in the intoxicating fragrance.

We can also see more lively things from our house sometimes, such as pygmy antelope, monkeys and squirrels. Next to our house is a long wall marking the edge of the resort, which is covered along the top with sharp, ferocious-looking broken glass. The monkeys walk along this as if it were a tarmaced path. There is something slightly surreal in walking, bleary-eyed at 7am, along to work, and seeing four small monkeys and perhaps a wild dog scattering into the trees in front of you. But I think it is also somewhat reassuring, that even in a highly-maintained, 4 star holiday resort, nature carries on as if we tourists and expats were never there.

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