Monday, 10 September 2012

Motaba... The Gorilla

On Father's Day, my dear Adam and I took the kids to Werribee Zoo. With gorgeous Melbourne weather for the first time in so many months, I took some time on my own to wander around the zoo whilst my dear Adam and the kids went on the Safari Bus Tour.

I came across the gorilla enclosure. I was the only one there... well, me and the gorilla. He was so close to the enclosure glass, I was praying my photos would turn out.

After snapping a few photos, I took the time to actually sit down and look at this magnificent creature. Have you ever actually looked at a Gorilla? For the first time in a very long time, I was in awe of an animal. I was captivated by his slow movements and he didn't seem to mind I was staring at him.

His name is Motaba and was born in 1983. A Western Lowland Gorilla, originally from the tropics of South Africa, he is a long way from home. As I continued to sit and look at Motaba, I noticed his facial expressions continuously change, the slight movement of his hands and his appreciation of the sun warming his body. Motaba's hands and feet were so large,  a necessity to carrying his massive weight.

At the age of 29, you can even see how age has affected Motaba. Wrinkles forming around his eyes, reflecting his years of experience. His quietness a reflection of a life well lived. I wondered what he was thinking as he was basking in the sun.

A small crowd began to form, kids were banging on the glass to get his attention. Motaba moved away. As he departed, he took one look back... I think he was slightly annoyed his quiet time was disrupted! I took his lead and headed off on my own again. I spent around 15 to 20 minutes with Motaba on my own and I must admit, it was one of my favourite parts of the day.

I returned to the enclosure with my dear Adam and kids throughout the morning, but Motaba never returned to his quiet sitting place. Thanks Motaba for allowing me to share your quiet time!

Melissa xoxo