Trump wins the election. Wasps, monkeys....
From the helicopter we spotted the truck. It had veered off the dirt track into a mound of dry earth. Common enough. Most trucks were imported, second-hand models, with bald tyres and dodgy brakes. Bad roads and alcohol do not help. What was not usual was the group of vultures that scattered as we landed.
All that was left of the driver was the trunk. No head or limbs. The work of monkeys.
For some time now a group of whitewash monkeys had been terrorising the district. They are a particularly aggressive species, colonisers who expel all competitors from the area, hunting and killing all rivals. It was as if they could bear no other form of life other than their own. Hence the name: whitewash. Originally confined to a small protected wildlife reserve, they had recently begun to invade the surrounding farms and villages. A long drought had brought out the worst in them, and they had attacked livestock and even domestic animals. But this was the first news of an attack on a human.
Today we received news that may help to understand the attack on the truck driver. It took place one day last week.
According to the local police, only a young girl called Martha survived. She has been terribly disfigured.
There were three of them, Martha, her elder sister Mary, and a friend called Susana. They were bathing in the rock pool just outside their village. As they left the water, naked, they felt eyes on them. They felt unprotected and afraid. As they reached for their clothes the monkeys attacked. Some men heard the screams and managed to chase the group of monkeys off, but by then Mary and Susana had been dismembered.
Our conclusion is that humans had not been attacked before because the monkeys did not recognise people in clothes as rivals. That has now changed.
We have informed the authorities, or at least tried to. They didn’t seem too worried. They believe all of this is simply a local matter, nothing that won’t sort itself out in time. They have promised ‘to look into it’.
As I write our dog barks, then falls silent. I can hear a scurrying on the tin roof, and an asthmatic, giggling sound. They have found us. It won’t be long now.