After much discussion, we have decided, this is me and the boys, to christen this year, the Year of the Meerkat! Woot woot, there you go celebrations all around and why? you may ask or some of you may already know the answer.... For those of us, living in and around Christchurch and Canterbury we need to celebrate the fact it is indeed the Year of the Meerkat as we have all taken on Meerkat tendencies.
For those of you non familiar with these endearing creature, there is always a band of the little things, bit like us humans really. Very small, about the size of a small rabbit, they normally wander around pretty happily. Now they have to keep an eye out for danger, so when they hear anything odd, they stand up on their hind legs and watch the sky, the ground, the trees, anything that could possibly move, and if it does move, then they take off full tilt towards home.
The boys and I have decided that PEOPLE in Canterbury have taken on all of the characteristics of Meerkats. Hence the decision to make it the Year of the Meerkat for Canterbury. Woot woot, flaming banners and obligatory badges all around. In drawing around me my tattered sense of humour and my wonderful guides who tell me to retain my sense of humour, I am beginning to see the characteristics everywhere. Just so you can keep an eye out too, I have enclosed the "human" guide to Meerkat characteristics.....
You know you are becoming a Meerkat when....
- A truck goes down the road and you stop, tilt your head and make sure the noise was really a truck.... and then continue with one ear cocked towards the road (Classic waiting Meerkat behaviour)
- You search the sky, in a vain hope that a cloud with show you whether it is earthquake weather pending... (Meerkats search the sky for predators by the way, not clouds)
- You comment to others, there hasn't been movement for a while, when do you think it will come... this is classic Meerkat share the news behaviour (usually conducted with loud chirping noises)
- You hear a rumble and immediately half stand up from your chair (this would be your hind legs if you were a Meerkat), you realise it was only your stomach and you then think of lunch (Meerkats love food as much as humans... no worries).
- When a rumble actually does happen, most humans immediately stand and look towards the closest safest thing to stand under, (Meerkats would do this too but since Meerkats are in the wild and there is no doorway or table), your best option is a doorway or the table, chair whatever. Once the danger has passed, once again you recommence your life. (Again, Meerkats have a wonderful quality of being right in the moment and forgetting the danger of five minutes before, and popping back into their lives).
- In classic moments of stress, Meerkats eat more food. Hmmm have you noticed at all how many MacDonald's and KFC's are sooo busy at the moment. The resemblences between Meerkat behaviour and ours is striking...
- Another interesting behaviour, Meerkats love to dig holes, hmmm I have noticed this behaviour in areas, perpetual digging by humans. Meerkats dig in sand, we seem to have a tendency to feel we need to dig in huge quantities of limitless liquefaction which we then cart of to other areas of our territory.... Meerkats find this incredibly frustrating... So do humans.
In summary, I think we should all celebrate our Meerkatness... because at the end of the day, these plucky little survivors are a lot like us. Determined to stay and stick it out, an ability to roll with the punches that life brings and still see the lighter side of life. Go the year of the Meerkat, we will get through it and look back and say "We were in it together and we made it through".