WE SET up a store outside the front gates of Monkey Forest Reserve. There was a wild debate on what we should call it, and a crazy chase through the treetops, until Jo-Jo suggested, ‘Place you can buy your crap back.’
I told the monkeys that instead of wasting time on stealing sunglasses, lip balm and bananas from tourists that we were bored of anyway, we could target passports, wallets and cameras. We’d more than triple our profit this way. They were skeptical of the idea at first, but realised I was king for a reason.
Our thieving strategies require speed:
The store made 2 million Rupiah on the first day.We would have made more, but the idea got fixed in some of the thieving monkeys heads that they themselves should get a portion of the money they earned, instead of it all going to the royal coffers. There’s no honour among thieves, I guess. I tried to introduce the idea of socialism, that I get 100%, they benefit from my 100%, and we’d all smoke coconut bongs later and laugh about the day’s work. They laughed right then and there and said the idea was unrealistic. I told them they were ungrateful, idiotic guttersnipes with lice. And then, would you believe it, they tackled each other to comb through each others’ hair for delicacies.
I have dreams of using the money and turning the place into a fun park. Through this we will buy out Ubud legitimately, slowly replacing the rice fields with cash crops. Or sunflowers, if they can grow in the climate.
So if a monkey in Ubud steals your wallet, camera, or passport, you can blame me for that. Send all comments of hate here. You won’t get your items back, but I think you’ll feel better.