I always wanted a Personal Monkey Butler. How long I have wished for a sweet, little servant to bring me a tall glass of iced tea on a silver tray, to answer the door and alert me to guests, or even to change the television channel back in the day (you see, it is a very old wish). When not waiting on me, he could entertain me with tricks or gossip from the next town over.
He could sit on the back of my tall armchair and watch as I hold court in the afternoon, whispering in my ear from time to time. I would be amused and give him a treat for his efforts.
As I grow older, this fantasy has rekindled itself. Now I picture myself at Netarts in my Adirondack chair overlooking the Bay. My Personal Monkey Butler is fetching me a pillow, feeding Goldie and dusting the sand dollars. Yes, a Personal Monkey Butler has definitely on my bucket list…that is, until a month ago when I got one.
Our story started when a travel-weary monkey, clad in a worn pirate suit came wandering down our lane. He was dragging his little hobo pack behind him along the gravel road. You see, we are the last stop on the road, in fact, the last stop on the continent. He pushed up his false eye patch, scratched his furry head and asked if I might be able to employ him. A dream come true, I scooped him up and took him inside.
I washed and mended his miniature pirate outfit and put a new feather in his cap. I gave him food and water before tucking him into the top bunk in our spare room. He nestled down on the pillows under the chenille blanket and began to snore. I quietly tip-toed down the hall to tell Bob my wishes had been granted.
The next morning the little guy wandered into the kitchen looking for a “cup of joe.” While brewing it, I asked him to watch closely because coffee making/serving would be one of his daily duties. We went through a list of other responsibilities before I asked him if I could call him Jeeves. He seemed fine with that, but preferred I call him Mr. Jeeves. I was fine with that too; after all, a good Personal Butler Monkey demands a little respect.
The first week his probation training period went pretty well. A few little misunderstandings are to be expected after all. Dishes go in the dishwasher, clothes go in the clothes washer, and the garden hose is for watering the garden not the local wildlife. He did, however, sit on my Adirondack chair and amuse me in the afternoon breeze.
Along about Day 10, when I asked Jeeves to bring us a few snacks to enjoy on the lawn, he haughtily responded, “It’s Mr. Jeeves to you!” as he threw down his linen napkin and stomped to his room. Fair enough, I had forgotten to use his formal name. He seemed much better the next day. In fact, he was so happy that when he requested his first evening off, I couldn’t deny him. Somehow Bob and I would fend for ourselves.
It was late that night when Mr. Jeeves returned and came weaving down the hallway only to miss his bed completely and pass out on the floor. The next morning, he was nursing a terrible headache and helped himself to the coffee before pouring ours. He did share all of the town gossip he learned the night before, so I forgave him.
Two days later I read in the Tillamook paper about an unruly monkey (dressed in a pirate costume) who was terrorizing the tourists at the boat ramp. Said monkey had been allegedly sitting on a dumpster, fiercely throwing old crab bait, while laughing hysterically at the vacationers attempts to launch their fishing boats. Mr. Jeeves denied everything but wasn’t able to furnish an alibi.
I am sad to report, things have further deteriorated. When last seen, Mr. Jeeves had taken up residence at the Upstairs Tavern; beer in one hand, ash-laden cigarette in the other, playing video poker with his tail. His pirate costume is disheveled, his hat lost its feather and the false eye patch is back. He won’t come home, even when I call him Mr. Jeeves and offer to get him help or a new feather.
My dream butler has become a crazy nightmare and I am forced to get up and wait on myself.
*Note: no monkeys were harmed in the writing of this story. The names were not changed to protect the innocent, because he is not innocent!