This is apparently blog post #5316. This blog is pretty unique. In the beginning, we didn’t know how it would go. To be frank, we didn’t know how anything would go. We just knew we needed people to get involved and donate so that we could care for the chimpanzees, and we had a desire to share the chimpanzees and their stories so people would know what was happening to chimpanzees in the world, particularly those in captivity.
A lot has transpired at the sanctuary and in the world since starting the blog in 2007. A LOT! If we were starting today, I am not sure we would choose to have such a frequent and deep form of communication. It’s really quite a lot of work, and for that reason not the most efficient of marketing tools. But it has become much more than a marketing tool. It’s the diary of Chimpanzee Sanctuary Northwest, and we hear from you readers/followers how much it brings to your lives, particularly when other things in the world are contentious and uncertain.
One thing that I love about the blog is that all of the staff caregivers, past and present, have contributed regularly. Each person has a different perspective with different thoughts rolling around in the back of their brains, and sees different things that the chimpanzees do on any given day; having a variety of writers makes the blog all the more interesting.
Posting daily and including the troubling events like fights and injuries as well as private reflections about the individual chimpanzees and chimpanzees in captivity in general, in addition to the hours of play, foraging, nesting, grooming, and eating that make up the chimpanzees’ day, has naturally lead to a more intimate and transparent look at life in a sanctuary.
I imagine, given unlimited time and resources, each of the caregivers could post multiple times a day. There’s just always something to say about chimpanzees (and bovines too!). I know I’m biased, but I think they are endlessly fascinating and endearing.
I know there are a handful (maybe more than a handful?) of people out there who have gone back and read every single blog post since the very beginning in 2007. That is mind blowing to me. You all are in a exclusive club!
Most people jump in at a specific time and try to catch up, learning about the chimpanzees’ quirks and our plans for the future as each new post is published.
Whether you are new to the blog or are in that exclusive club, I know you have questions.
So, today I invite you to post those questions in the comments – the ones that you’ve been wondering about for a while or the ones you just thought of a second ago.
I will not answer them in the comments, but rather the staff will use the questions to build future blog posts upon. I am not making any promises; we likely won’t get to every question posed to us, but I imagine we will see some trends and your questions will spark future blog posts.
This whole blog experiment has been a rewarding interactive process. I know I’ve met, both virtually and in person, some of the most thoughtful and kind people I will ever meet because they happened upon this blog and fell in love with the chimpanzees.
No doubt many posts have been written based on comments. This is just a more formal process. So, feel free to come back to this post later and pose more questions. I think it will be really interesting to see what you want to know!
In another take on intimacy, you may know that there’s a spot in one of the front rooms that we call the “Portrait Studio” because of the natural light that comes through the window, creating opportunities for photos that bring out the gorgeousness of the chimps. Below are a few I have taken recently.
And for a slice of today, here are some photos of J.B. giving Anna and I the tour of the expansion in progress, with Honey B and Willy B looking on: