I am willing to bet that every parent does it – around six to twelve months of age, we all begin introducing our children to animal sounds in the high hopes that they will reward us by parroting them back to us – garbled spit and all. “What does the [insert animal name here] say?”
With Lucy, we started this game at a young age, spending our early mornings out on our porch, listening to the sounds of the barrio below slowly drift their way into our soundscape.
As we listened to the pack of street dogs tussle over a bitch in heat, we taught Lucy, “guau, guau” the Spanish version of “woof, woof.”
As the roosters cued the sunrise, we taught her “cock a doodle doo.”
As the howler monkeys awakened from their misty mountain slumber with a giant yawn, we taught her “ooh, ooh, ooh.”
As the geckos frolicked around the porch light, we taught her “kiss, kiss, kiss.”
As the guardabarranco pair flirted among the treetops, we taught her “tweet, tweet, tweet.”
Yesterday, as we were playing on the porch, a monkey howled in the distance. Lucy peered up at me with the slightest of smiles.
When people question why we are raising our daughter in a 3rd world country, well, this is why.