Here are a few moments that I captured on my phone throughout the past week.
People often ask if it’s difficult to care for chimpanzees without being able to touch them outside of the very limited contact we have through the mesh. Perhaps it’s a function of the institutional cultures in which we were trained, but it’s not something I really think about. Nor do I care much about it when it does cross my mind. They have their world, we have ours, and there are clearly-defined, logical rules for the areas where those two worlds meet for the sake of everyone’s safety. The way we interact with the chimps in our care becomes natural and comfortable for both them and us, and pushing those boundaries does nothing but put our own desires above their best interests.
That being said, there’s not a person on earth that’s seen Mave in action and not wanted to be enveloped in her soft, fuzzy embrace.
So sue me.