Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Lizard Tale

From my kitchen window I can see a birdhouse hanging from a tree in our garden. A couple of years ago a gecko moved into the birdhouse. At the time it didn’t seem like the best place for a small lizard to set up house, but so far it hasn’t been eaten by any predatory birds and seems to be happy.

The lease on the little house we have been living in will expire comes this May and we’ve been looking for another place to set up house ourselves. I hope we are as lucky as that lizard in my garden.

The other day I heard an interesting story about a guy in Japan who was remodeling his house. He had been thinking about making some changes ever since he bought the place about ten years ago. Finally he decided to do the job himself and one day while taking down one of the interior walls he spied a gecko standing motionless on the interior surface of the exposed outer wall. The man tapped the wall with the hammer but the gecko didn’t move an inch. When he moved in for closer inspection he noticed a nail head protruding from the creature’s foot. The poor animal’s foot had been nailed to the wall. As the man thought about how he would set the trapped gecko free, it dawned on him that neither he nor anyone else had ever done any work on the house since he bought it. Not a single nail had been driven into the walls since the structure was first built a decade ago. “How the heck has it been able to survive trapped here between these walls for so long?” the man asked himself when all of a sudden there appeared a second gecko bearing in its mouth a small insect. The second gecko carried the insect to the impaled gecko before quickly darting away. The man was flabbergasted. He then knew how it managed to live all these years. Everyday for the last decade this little lizard had fed, cared for, and well loved its poor trapped companion. It was the secret to a mystery that had lain right behind his wall, a mystery he never even knew existed until that day. We can learn a lot from lizards.

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