Friday, August 17, 2007
Belly up to the bar~
On a previous jaunt with my camera, I stumbled across a woman sleeping on a blanket on the grounds of a mansion whose gardens I was touring. She woke to the sound of my camera's shutter. (I was not taking pictures of her.)
"Do you like butterflies?" she asked, apropos of nothing, as she rose to a sitting position. It turns out she had been meditating; I hadn't woken her at all, just interrupted her alpha waves.
I told her I did, and she told me where to find a butterfly zoo.
As she gave directions, I said, "Oh, yes, I know where you mean." I hadn't a clue, but I knew from experience that when I don't understand directions people give, they try again and again.
"You know where the ice cream stand is on Route 138? No? Well then do you know where the farm stand is across from the police station? No? How about the swamp hidden by the oak trees? Oh, you do? (No.) Well, go past the swamp about a half mile . . ."
A couple days later, I made the trip to the butterfly zoo-- courtesy of my GPS-- receiving a rather disappointing first impression: a dilapidated screened green house in an overgrown graveled lot.
Once inside the double security doors, after a lecture by the butterfly keeper on government regulations regarding butterflies, I was transported to the southern hemisphere, populated by insects, some of which I'd never heard of. Inside was a flowered habitat for over 400 butterflies of varying species fluttering about sipping nectar and landing on visitors.
Two South American Owl butterflies hung lethargically on the exit door.
"I'm not worried they'll escape," said the butterfly tour guide. "They're drunk."
It turns out that owl butterflies like to belly up to the bar. They spend most of their time sucking fermented fruit juice from a bowl of wretched looking bananas, and sleeping off the resultant intoxication.
"Oh, the poor things," I said.
"Hey, they only live two weeks. Do you blame them?"
Upon leaving the zoo I impulsively followed signs to the Greenvale winery. It sounded like a good place to take pictures. I was given a tour of the vineyards overlooking the ocean, snapped some pictures and bellied up to the bar for a taste of fermented fruit juice.
I bought two bottles of local wine and will sip a little on the patio, while watching the birds as the sun goes down, but not enough to leave me lethargically hanging from anything. I prefer to spend my life alert and aware.
As for the owl butterflies . . . oh, the poor things. They're missing life, and their life is too short as is.
More butterflies in my life~
The Butterfly Zoo