892, 893…..Mango trees grow all over Costa Rica. Over the past couple of weeks they have ripening to perfection. On the older fenced properties, there are some massive trees that will produce hundreds of mangos. (Unfortunately, a number of the trees have been cut down to make way for the condos). A number of the tree branches hang over the walls of these homes and anyone walking by may get a few of these bitter sweet fruit that fall from the trees. When you walk down the road you will see kids and families looking for fresh mangos. Some families go first thing in the morning with their trucks and ladders to load up before the property owners get up. Kids will climb the trees, grab them and eat them as they walk along the beach. In the stores, there are cart loads for sale; 1000 colones for the green ones and 2000 colones for the ripe ones.
But with mango trees come howler monkeys…..whole families/clans of them. They love the mangos and will go from tree to tree to get the ripe ones. We have seen families of up to 20 in the trees across the street from us and boy do they make a lot of noise. This is the grandfather of the family in front of our place.
If you have ever seen a howler monkey they are best known for the noises that they make. They sound a lot like apes. But if you ever see a large male monkey you will probably remember them most for their “cojones”. (Un)fortunately, we weren’t able to get a photograph but I’m sure you get the picture.
The baby monkeys are usually watched by the mum as they travel up and down the trees.
This monkey is going to have to wait awhile for these mangos to ripen.
And when they have picked all the ripe mangos from one tree they jump across to the next one and travel up and down the street.
Under the mango trees, the land owners usually have sheds that are covered with tin roofs and often when a mango falls it lands on the roof with a clang. The mangos fall: as they ripen, when a monkey misses them or when the wind blows. One day last week it was really windy and the mangos were falling like crazy. And when the mangos clang, the monkeys get all excited and start making a ruckus and then the parrots chime in. It’s like a chain reaction and the noise ricochets throughout the neighbourhood.
As a joke, we started to count the mangos as they fell onto the tin roofs……902, 903…..here come some more mangos.