Don't Monkey Around!

Just a quick travel vignette. While touring Sri Lanka, I visited a temple complex. Often these temples are located in rural or suburban areas and have an endemic monkey population. Since the country is primarily Buddhist, people and our near relatives coexist very peacefully.

That peace and harmony was broken by a women who went to retrieve her wandering toddler, mistakenly leaving her pocketbook behind. In the blink of an eye, a silver langur swung down and snatched the purse. When the woman ran after it, the offending primate jumped into a tree and sat on a branch. As we watched, he rummaged through her purse, dropping all manner of items to the ground, some of them, shall I say, of a personal nature. The poor woman was embarrassed, but also laughing. When the critter was left with an empty bag, he sniffed it to see if any vestige of food escaped his TSA-like hand check. When he found none, he simply dropped the pocketbook on the ground and scanned the tide of humans for his next victim.

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