I keep a daily journal and jot things down about our monthly sister meetings and other events that happen in a day. Those musings will spark a memory and then I’m at the keyboard and the memory takes written form. The following story came about from our May 17, 2014 sister meeting.
We had our monthly sister meeting on Saturday, May 17th. It was a fun afternoon but when it came time to play a card game we call Canadian Salsa I opted to keep score. I believe it’s more fun to watch the fireworks than be involved in setting them off…and there were some fireworks as some of my sisters are very competitive. They sometimes get very testy and use language you wouldn’t expect to hear from nice, older ladies. All of my sisters can give as good as they get resulting in the fireworks I mentioned. Sister #4 reminded us that May 18th was her son’s 21st birthday but he had to work 10 am until 10 pm that day so she invited us all to her home on May 20th to help him celebrate the occasion.
Everyone gathered at Sister #4’s home on the 20th for our nephew’s birthday. We were talking and having a good time when Dad’s monkey was mentioned. Dad always had animals of one type or another and this was a small monkey but I’m not sure what type. I can still picture him in his cage sitting there watching and waiting for someone to get too close to him. Sister #4, who was 3 or 4 years old at the time, remembered the morning the monkey was found dead. Stiffer than a board dead. Now what I remember, being 7 or 8 years old or so at the time, was that this critter was a mean, nasty, vile, monkey but Dad loved him anyway. I don’t remember the monkey’s name but I do remember how he liked to throw poop which drove my mother nuts and was the reason none of us would chance getting too close to his cage. Sisters #5 and #6 had no memory of Dad’s monkey and I told them that was because this happened before they were born. The monkey matter involved myself and Sisters #2, #3 and #4.
The day before the monkey’s demise my sisters and I found a bag of those peanut candies; the soft orange colored candy that looks like peanuts. The monkey loved that candy so much and when he saw we had the bag of candy he decided getting candy was better than throwing poop. Since he was being so nice we continued giving him the candy until we ended up feeding the entire bag of candy to Dad’s monkey. Sister #4 kept insisting she was too short to reach the cage so she couldn’t have been the one to feed the monkey the killing piece of candy. I’ll admit I was tall for an 8 year old but I wasn’t the only one feeding the monkey those candy peanuts; there were 4 of us involved in this caper and I reminded my sisters they did make chairs to stand on in those days. In our defense we didn’t intend for the monkey to die from a candy peanut overdose. It was one of the few times the monkey behaved nicely and we were simply enjoying giving him his favorite candy. I remember how we giggled as he happily chattered at us while holding his little hand out the bars of his cage for more candy. He wasn’t so happy when the bag was empty, however, bouncing around inside his cage and making familiar noises that warned you to get away which we were very quick to do. He had eaten the entire bag of candy, after all, and what goes in eventually comes out. None of us wanted to be within range when it came out.
The only one to miss the monkey was Dad. He thought the monkey died of old age so maybe we didn’t really kill the monkey after all. We were, however, smart enough at the time to not mention the bag of candy to Dad until many years later.
The next day Sister #5 told me about how she had fallen asleep in her chair the night of her son’s birthday party. He and his girlfriend had gone out after the party and when they came home later that evening they woke her up to give her a bag of the marshmallow candy peanuts. She was just grateful it wasn’t a monkey.
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