Monday, February 22, 2010


Here in Bali there are four kinds of lizards that I know of. Admittedly, I don’t know much. But in any case, there are:

1. The Cecak. This is a smallish lizard, measuring in length from the size of an index finger to the size of a hand. This lizard scurries about rapidly, most usually on walls or ceilings, and has not much to say (as compared with its larger cousins).

2. The Tokek, a larger lizard, is perhaps the length of a child’s arm from elbow to wrist. This lizard says, appropriately enough, “Tokek” (pronounced toe-kay).

3. The third lizard is called Buayak (boo-I-ock). He also speaks, and also says his own name. Repeatedly. One rarely sees the Buayak. One rarely wants to. It is the length of a leg, from hip to big toe. At nighttime the creature can be heard--not so often crawling about on the ground as actually falling (or jumping, I don’t know) from trees. Upon colliding with the ground, this creature always utters its own name.

4. The alligator.

This is what I know so far of reptile life in Bali. Pretty much.

Oh, one more thing. When the Cecak feels threatened, it discards its tail and dashes off to hiding with the remainder of its body, while the tail itself wiggles and creeps about for a half minute or so.

Inventive, no?

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