Chaircat’s Letter June 2003

» Posted on Jun 1, 2003 in Chaircat's Letter | 0 comments

Chaircat’s Letter June 2003

Dear Friends, The month of May was our anniversary here at the Orphanage. My brother Bill, sister Diana and I came here 5 years ago. It would have proved a special day for us had it not been for the fact that I was in the dog box.

Yes folks, a cheetah in the dog box, very degrading!

It all started when Iris decided to take anniversary pictures. She didn’t take them through the hole in the fence made for this purpose, like she tells everyone else to do. No, she had to come into the pen and walk around us searching for the best light, the best angle, cheered by the keepers shouting, "smile."

You know the scenario. As if Cheetahs smiled!

Just because she raised us, was our "nanny" so-to-speak when we were orphaned at a young age and in a bad state, she thinks she can now tell us what to do.

We played the game for a while. For her sake. But then something else caught my attention. Remember Mpya, our New Years’ Bongo baby… well Mpya had followed unbeknown to the keepers. Her curiosity took her right up to my home turf, where she had not ventured before. Being the Cheetah that I am, I could not resist, took one sudden leap from my high stand over Iris’ head just barely avoiding her fancy camera. I landed with the appropriate thump just in front of little Mpya and let out an impressive snarl.

This got everyone’s attention all right! Especially Mpya’s. She fled jumping fences, getting caught up in the next, panicking, with the entire staff chasing after her trying to free and calm her. I added a few more snarls to the excitement, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

But not for long. Mpya was freed from her entanglement and fled full speed to the safe custody of her father an impressive Bull of no less than 700 pounds. He shot me an angry glance. Instinct warned me of what a bongo bull might do to a Cheetah even as strong as myself. I retreated acting like nothing ever happened.

Mountain Bongo in Kenya

Mpya had some bloody scratches on her face of which they made a big fuss. That is how I ended up in bad graces but only for a while. At least Iris defended our honor by explaining that Cheetahs will be Cheetahs and the keepers were pacified at last.

We still got all our food that night which to me is all-important; especially having developed a huge appetite by the "fun" I had scaring Mpya. I doubt we’ll ever see her this close again. She is learning fast, as nature would have intended.

Nobody made a fuss over our anniversary, but I know that we are now considered adult and there are plans underway to have us start our own families soon.

June brings all you fathers out there the joy of celebration and I hope to be able to join in soon…

Meanwhile, I hope you will enjoy the story of the princess and the beast. Someday soon I hope Iris will tell our own story.


Mount Kenya Wildlife Conservancy