Saturday, November 22, 2008

Monkey Business

What is it about monkeys that children love so much? I think it must be that they can see so much of themselves in the way they play and interact. I don't think I have ever seen a child that is not fascinated by monkeys. Seth is certainly no exception. He is currently trying to amass the premier North American toy monkey collection. One of his favorite activities right now is to take his long armed plush monkeys and hang them about the house or - even better- in the bushes.
We have a zoo membership and use it on a regular basis. Although Seth loves all of the animals, "au-pa-tants" and "lineys" alike, the "munteys" are far and away his favorite. He could watch the Siamangs doing their acrobats on ape island all day - especially if they hooping and hollering about. At the end of each trip to the zoo, I ask Seth which animal he wants to see again before we leave. I already know his answer and off to ape island we go for one last glimpse. I think he even dreams about the monkeys at the zoo. One morning when Seth had climbed into our bed, both of us were barely awake and Seth, with little slits for eyes, looked up at me and sleepily said, "Want to see baboon the 'udder' (other) way."
Each day for story time, Seth gets to pick out which books he wants to read. More often then not "muntey boot" (monkey book) is among his selections. (I Am A Little Monkey by Francois Crozat - a birthday gift from Papa Roper.) He often pretends like he is a monkey. He swings fromany surface he can get a hold of and oohas and aahs around the house . Once, while sitting on Daddy's lap, he even pretended to clean bugs off Daddy and eat them - just like the monkeys in the book do! He gobbles up bananas and sometimes refers to himself as "Seth Monkey".
One day, we stumbled upon Curious George on PBS and Seth was instantly mesmarized. He often says "Want to watch muntey show" and likes to pile his monkeys and monkey pillows about him when he gets to watch.
Whatever it is about these funny creatures that fascinates Seth, I fully embrace it. Even though it seems at times to border on obsession, it represents the wonder and magic of childhood that lasts for such a short time.

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