By Michael Clunies-Ross
Arctictis binturong. This is my name. But I prefer, just Binturong, or Binto, for short. Kumusta ka?
Mostly, I am the chilled out one, I like to relax, and enjoy. To relax, and enjoy, these are the finer things, for me, the Binturong. For me now, it seems not so much so, but usually the Binturong are muy relaxo. I live in the trees in Palawan, is the island in the Philippines, near national park. I like to eat fish, sometime lizards, little frogs, and canned peaches, I also like puns.
Usually. But not lately. Lately, hard times has fallen, like many trees. Is necessary, they say, the urbanisation, and el globalisation. I say, too many foresters, too many branch mangers, too much noise, I say, it’s been too long, for Binturong.
It also has been too long since I see my love, Binta.
Bepore I have the girl priend, you know. Her name, Binta. Very beautiful. Very, my love. But she gone.
Where did she go?
I don’t know, maybe I know, I don’t know, but I will tell you what happened to me the last week, if I remember, yes, it was the Thursday.
I was hanging in the tree, as usual, prehensile, but I am very hungry. Suddenly I see a tasty lizard on the branch below. Hmmm tasty lizard I say. Then, I about to jump at the lizard when suddenly, out of nowhere, a snake, a flying snake, he stole my lizard! How can a snake ply? I say myself. This was the first strange thing.
Then, I heard some loud noises and singing. I am still very hungry so I go to see what is the commotion. Is was the Filipino Foresters. They had taken a break from foresting and are singing Karaoke.
This was the second strange thing also but I say myself I am still very hungry and maybe the Filipinos will have some tasty food.
I go down the tree into the forest and I walk up to them. Hello I say to the foresters. One nice forester smiles to me and says hello, then he gave me some canned peaches. Hmmm canned peaches, they were very good. I was thinking the Filipino foresters were very friendly. I was still hungry and the Filipinos seemed so relaxed and having fun that I asked for some more canned peaches. Sure, no problemo says one of the Filipinos and he gives me some more canned peaches. Then, out of nowhere another man comes prom behind me and throws the towel and tries to grab me up. I am very frightened so I bite his arm and squeeze out of the towel and ran away. The Filipino foresters tried to chase me but I am too fast and luckily I escaped.
This was so strange for me. I was angry at myself to trust these men. They almost caught me and then maybe who knows? Later that day, the foresters are laughing and started the loud noises of the chainsaws again and more trees fall, destroying my forest. I thought maybe this is what happened to Binta. Maybe the Poresters tricked her like me, with the canned peaches. Binta, where is she?
So you see, I say you, I cannot relax and enjoy now. I miss Binta. I don’t like all this foresting noise. I miss my trees.
Filippino People of Palawan I say you, Stop the Foresting, stop catching the Binturong, Yes, canned peaches are okay, but please, the Binturong need a place to stay, like a national park. If you keep Foresting and taking Binturong, it won’t be too long before the Binturong is gone.