Nyla Spends an Afternoon with a Gorilla

Nyla and Karem were visiting their aunt Nudrat in the provincial capital. Nyla was happy to spend some days in that big city. Each day both husband and wife visited some new place. They wanted to enjoy and create beautiful memories together. Their Aunt guided them for what places were worth visiting. Nyla got excited to meet all her animal long lost relatives at one place. For her, it was like going to a wedding party where she always met a great diversity of people, that otherwise was not possible. All was going well until they reached the zoo.

Nyla Discovers Herself

Since Aunt Nudrat had suggested the zoo. Nyla geared up with long eared crochet cap with a bunny face, and leopard print pants and a handbag with a cat’s tail. She was looking damn cute. Aunt Nudrat could not be always be right when it comes to the after math of things with Nyla. Nyla discovered the hidden corners of her heart and mind in the zoo. She loved all animals but she especially felt connected with a gorilla. Though the gorilla still remained a gorilla but Nyla was an altered person when the zoo visit ended. She happened to gain the knowledge about the animals.  Similarly, the animals provided her an insight about herself. Let us see what happened with Nyla in the Zoo.  

What Happened at the Zoo?

 There were more visitors in the zoo than usual. It was a weekend. Nyla was now like Alice in the wonderland. She felt the animals were cared well. At some points she even felt the animals were lucky to have that easy life. It was all on surface. That they were enjoying a good life. All of them looked healthy too.  Nyla came face to face what changed her mind and showed her the reality of her own kind.  She did not even mind them being locked in, living at an artificially created natural habitat. Would Nyla love that for herself? Would she exchange her free life with an artificial so-called easy life? Nyla felt, perhaps, humanity had already created a big zoo for themselves, replacing every natural thing with another synthetic one.

Nyla was Metamorphosing Unexpectedly, for Some Reason She Felt Stupid

 After having enough good time with lovely animals at the zoo, Nyla felt animals had made her day wonderful. But then, her mind rebelled and it was out of control. She had to let it go for a while. Her conscience started hurting, she tried to ignore. She did not want to ruin good time. She thought that she was over thinking about the zoo animals. But then she gave up and unleashed her uncontrollable thoughts, reasoning and emotions.  Suddenly a thought popped in that animals did not belong to the zoo. Neither did they deserve captivity and imprisonment.

Nyla Tried to Replace Painful Thoughts with Ice Cream

 Nyla knew it was time to sooth her disturbed mind. Whenever she felt hurt, she needed her lovely ice cream to embalm her mind. She pushed aside her thoughts but then she had to give up. She told Karem that she needed an ice cream immediately. Karem knew it was an emergency. Then came a rushing thought to Nyla ‘’ animals do have their natural habitat’’ Nyla told Karem she needed a bigger cup now.   Then came another fortified thought ‘animals do have feelings and intelligence ‘’ Nyla said please, karem hurry up I need my favorite peach flavored big cup now. Her mind froze and she needed to thaw it. ‘’ She fought with it by thinking that tomorrow she would do some shopping. Then came the last raging thought ‘’why animals were even there just because human think they are smarter than animals.’’ Nyla felt helpless at the thought that had perhaps ruined a lovely day. Then karem left to complete her sweet mission.  

Photo by Nejc Kou0161ir on Pexels.com

What Was Happening to Nyla?

Nyla started wondering that would she ever be a normal human being, like a regular one, like others. why was it necessary that she was always different from others? and being different deprived her from certain ease with life. Anyway, Nyla came back to the present world around her when some little boy started laughing at a paraquets flutter. Nyla also smiled and she felt at peace. She felt that she was really over thinking about the zoo animals. Who knows maybe they are happier than us -humans at our homes?  They were having food and shelter and even meds without any effort on their part. Are we all happy? or do all of us even have homes? That was the question that made her more thoughtful. Happiness never comes easy. One thing was certain only in that whole world of uncertainty.  Nyla knew she was a different person, not the same who had entered the zoo few minutes ago.

The last Cage and The Smart Animal

While karem was away, Nyla decided to spend some time with the last animal in the last cage. The cage was one of the biggest in the zoo and there sat a big gorilla. Karem got late, so Nyla happened to spend more time than expected. Nyla could have nice time observing that gorilla, who had so much common with us. She decided to have an interview of the inmate.

Did He fail to Qualify Only with Few Points?

Nyla got closer to the cage of that gorgeous gorilla. As soon as she sat down, she saw the things about the gorilla, she did not observe before. The animal was more like us than she actually knew. She felt that she had insulted the gorilla in her mind’s corner. After all being a human being comes with much advanced degree of evolution. The gorilla seemed to achieve most of it, though not all of it.   She knew the poor animal was having hard time. Not happy at all. He had no network of communication with his own kind. A boring life without any smart gadget, maybe sad or frustrated, he was.  She sat there for quite some time but the gorilla never once looked at her. She had to start the conversation herself. This conversation can be called an interview.                                             

Nyla: How are you?

Gorilla; How do I look to you?

Nyla; You don’t look happy.

Gorilla; Do I have an option?  How the hell you can even think that?

Nyla; I am excited to see you

Gorilla; I don’t think it is a question. But I am sick of looking at hundreds of bald faces every day.

Nyla; Why don’t you look at me.

Gorilla; Because you are one of them.

Nyla; one of who?

Gorilla; Do not play innocent, you know exactly what I mean. What a disgusting life I have just to amuse the noisy crowds every day.

Nyla; You see! children they are cheered up and excited when they look at you. You are doing a service.

Gorilla. ok, then would you take my place only for a day?

Nyla shivered at this answer, she tried to compose herself and posed another question.

Nyla; I think even then children love you. They want to see you here not me.

Gorilla; What? Children did not lock me here. Also keep your peas into their pods. They are the best among you. If they know, what you know about me, they would send me back to where I belong.

Nyla; well, now you belong here, don’t you?

Gorilla; I wonder who sent you here? Don’t they have more competent person than you?

Nyla ignored this question and asked.  Don’t you think, only if you had tried a bit more, you just missed few points for becoming like us. This fact makes me sad when I look at you.  

Gorilla. I think, you have lost your mind, also I have no desire to be like any of you. The darkest of the hearts you have.  We never build cages. We never even thought about it. We would not wish to bring this hell of imprisonment even to the worst of our enemies.

Nyla; What about me? What do you think about me? Who I am?

Nyla was now losing patience with him.

Gorilla. Yes, you can say anything when you are on the other side of the cage. what do you think who you are? If you don’t know the reality, I tell you. Your kind thinks the whole animal world is made for their exploitation. Just because you have few more ounces of bigger brains.

Nyla; Sorry to offend you, let’s move ahead. Next question. Did you have a family?

Gorilla; Ask your mom, she knows better!

Nyla; So, you never really wanted that you were not gorilla or you were a human?

Gorilla. Did you ever want to be someone other than human? I think that is the answer to your question.

Nyla; No, that is not an answer, I would let go my question.

Gorilla.  I would never wish to lock you, no. Not, for the life of me I would ever bring that pain to any single soul and place it into eternal imprisonment. You imprison your people who do worst of crimes. when it comes to the most innocent creatures like me, you just reverse your laws.

Nyla; wow, look at you, you have lovely hands. (Suddenly Nyla caught sight of gorilla, s hands.)

Gorilla; Useless, useless.

Nyla; What is useless?

Gorilla. Useless what you said. Beautiful are the hands that climb the trees in the wilderness, not those that get pampered in the saloons. Think about what your civilization is further making you. (Hahaha)

Nyla. I am so glad you laughed. I can suppose that you felt the joy.

Gorilla. No, my laugh is like a rain that does not cool down the hot weather.

Nyla; well, I still wish you were human like me.

Gorilla. Why don’t you get over this silly thought?  I never wish that, why can’t you just accept me as I am. I think the old man Darwin spoiled your mind.

Nyla. I think being human is better than being a gorilla.

Gorilla. only in your stupid mind. You people are criminal and hypocrite.  You make one rule for your kind and another for the rest of the life on earth. You know what is worst about you? you still are not sure that all humans are one race. (hahahahaha)

Nyla. you are laughing again.

Gorilla; Yes, at your stupidity, and you thought you can interview me, just your pride. I am better than you and I think I have reversed it at you. Now you know more about yourself.

Nyla felt humiliated. The gorilla had touched her conscience. Though never once he looked at her. She just threw the last question.

Nyla; Can we both be friends?

Gorilla. Yes, only on the same side, decide yourself. We can’t be friends if there is lock between us, and you know that well.

Nyla desperately wanted to unlock the gorilla but she did not know how. Just then Karem appeared, holding ice creams.  Nyla wished to exchange Karem with gorilla but this silly thought made her smile. Karem found her smiling in the air and that was very suspicious for him.

Nyla Wanted a Better World

Nyla wanted all the people of the world, all life on the planet on the same side. She wished to make the earth a heaven for everyone, just the way it was million years ago. Who knows, some day we would be able to do that or, there will be no advance life on earth. Maybe some only bacteria would be living and feeding on some primitive left-over life.

What Made Nyla Cry?

Nyla felt sad and few precious pearls rolled down her cheeks. Karem had no doubt that Nyla needed the next trip to a psychiatrist. His feet froze to the ground and all the ice cream started melting. ’Are you ok? Karem asked and he forgot the ice cream. ‘’What happened?  Look at you,’’ Nyla said aloud.  Karem got back from his thoughts and felt so stupid. The ice cream was dripping.

 The other side

Nyla asked herself ‘’Are not we too sensitive?  Even to our stupid thoughts, and we believe and judge ourselves over small things. And when it comes to animals, we reverse everything and turn out insensitive. Then we place them’’ on the other side ‘’ 

7 Comments

  1. swadharma9 says:

    there is a book written in the 1990’s by daniel quinn, called “Ishmael” that i believe you would love. all that you say in this post reminds me much of that book. well said! 🙏🏼👍🏼🤗❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ruqia Ismat says:

      Thanks for the recommendation. I will try to find and read.🙏🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I think the gorilla made a lot of sense

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Keithfslater says:

    Thank you, Ruqia. You certainly got me thinking about the ‘cages’ of life within which we live, by choice or by force!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. katelon says:

    Powerful story. I really struggle with zoos, even those that have created natural habitats for the animals. I understand that some animals in zoos were there to rehabilitate them after some injury, etc. And I also understand that it allows children and adults to interact with animals they wouldn’t see otherwise and perhaps then be moved to care for the earth and all life upon it. But I’d still rather they all be free.

    Thanks for following my travel blog and my empower and balance blog. I appreciate it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ruqia Ismat says:

      I am glad you liked this story. This story contains some details of my personal experience. ..also I am thankful to you as well.🙏🙏💗

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s