Now, I don’t want to scare you off seeing monkeys completely (as I did with Danica & Seonaid when they visited Japan), so I will first show you this picture of a cute monkey:
Awww! So cutee!
Now I will show you this photo:
This photo is less cute than the previous.
(Please take the time to appreciate the awkwardness in the above self-timer photo. Also please note that the monkey is licking the wall.)
As I said, the monkeys of Monkey Road in Ubud, are uniquely bold. These monkeys are not afraid of people, as hoards of tourists trek through their territory daily. This makes them, a bit more rambunctious than other monkeys I have encountered. Let me recall for you one terrifying monkey story, that took place literally seconds after the above self-timer photo was taken:
Two monkeys, with little babies on their backs, were having a bit of a dispute. Perhaps about a banana or whose baby was cuter – I don’t pretend to understand a monkeys ways. The argument escalated, and as one mother monkey began to back away, a small wayward human child got in its path. It its surprise, anger, confusion, and rage the mother monkey grabbed the little girl by the leg and bit her. The child was quickly attended to by her mother, and the monkeys fled. We watched as the “helpers” arrived (there is no actual staff of the monkey forest. It is quite literally just a forest where monkeys live, and you enter at your own risk). The girl had stopped crying and it appeared the monkey didn’t actually break skin. Nonetheless, she was whisked away in a car last we saw.
The moral of this story? Especially when visiting other countries, you must remember that you are a visitor, a guest. In this situation, we were not only a visitor to Indonesia, but a visitor to the monkeys territory. Take caution when around wild animals, and be respectful of the environment and the locals (human & animal). And for the love of God, watch your kids!