You have probably heard about, or maybe you are experiencing, the dramatic storm that is hitting the Pacific Northwest today.
The majestic Cascade Mountain Range protects Cle Elum from a lot of the wetter weather that our friends to the west in the Seattle area receive, and we are certainly not getting the extreme rain and wind that is expected closer to the coast. Nevertheless, it rained ALL day today, and it’s still coming down.
This is what the chimpanzees were up to today (similar to many of you, I suspect):
Jamie watching the rain from the greenhouse:
Don’t worry – Jamie managed to get a walk in before it really started to come down.
Annie nesting in the front rooms:
Yesterday, Margaret, a friend and supporter who has known the chimpanzees since their arrival, reminded me of the first time the chimpanzees experienced a real rainstorm at the sanctuary. Margaret was volunteering that day. It was almost exactly eight years ago.
I wrote about the chimpanzees’ experience and posted photos in the blog post Rainstorm Bravery. This was three years before Young’s Hill was complete and before the greenhouse panels were on, so the rain came down right into what is now the greenhouse.
Imagine your very first experience being able to go out into a rainstorm (or just watch from the safety and comfort of your bed). Though they were in their 20s and 30s, everything in their sanctuary life was just so new to the chimpanzees.
Today, the rain doesn’t faze them too much, but when we get thunderstorms or other out-of-the-ordinary weather, they do still react. One of my favorite experiences at the chimp house was watching Burrito do a “rain dance” in 2013.
In honor of the power of weather, the connection that we have to our environment, and the inner chimpanzee in all of us, I’ve reposted the video below.
I hope everyone is staying safe and warm as you wait out the storm.