Mission accomplished! Two years ago, after witnessing abuse and neglect of monkeys while on vacation on a remote island in Indonesia, I called upon the management of my hotel to create change. As many of you know, I spent my vacation happily releasing nine of the monkeys back into the jungle from which they had been taken. I also worked to build proper enclosures with enrichment for the remaining three monkeys, geese, and a special porcupine.
I’d cut a deal. At the time there was no choice. The hotel would release nine monkeys back into the wild if three stayed. My condition was that the three that stayed must have the chains cut from their necks and they must be free to roam in their enclosure. The hotel agreed and also offered to let the geese out of their concrete enclosure during the day to roam the property and swim in its pond. Many of the staff were so happy with the changes they greeted me by slapping their heart with their hand while calling me, “monkey lady”.
Six months after these changes, I received an email from the hotel’s manager, Agus Tabah, telling me that the remaining monkeys and geese had been released permanently.
But… I still worried about the porcupine. He was so grateful to me after I brought him a hollow log to live in. We established a friendship during my time there. He was blind from exposure to the harsh sun, confined to a wire mesh cage with only rice to eat and water that dropped into a seashell when it rained. When I greeted him every few hours with fresh fruit, he ran to me and nuzzled my finger. I fell in love with his soul.
The other day I found myself thinking about him and started to cry. I felt like I’d let him down when I left. So I called Agus and asked him about my friend, the porcupine. And that’s when he proudly said, “Jennifer, all of the animals on the property, with the exception of one horse, have new homes. They are all fine.”
Joy! Mission accomplished!
There were many before me who complained of the conditions at the hotel’s makeshift zoo. Because many of you sent emails to the hotel, Mr. Tabah was compelled to follow his own heart and continue the work we started.
Why this update? Because some people don’t think their voice makes a difference. It always does, whether it’s a signature on a petition, an email sent, or a call to your senator/representative/member of parliament. When more than one raises his or her voice against what is wrong, change is created.
I promised the Jayakarta Hotel in Flores, Indonesia that the day they created a kind campus, I would promote them.
As a reward for creating positive change, please consider going over to their page and thanking them with a note that says; “The monkey lady sent me. Thank you for your kindness to animals.”
Here’s their link: Jayakarta Hotel