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A Stressful Week

A Japanese TV crew scours my computer for cute capybara photos

Japanese TV crew

A Melanie’s Mondays post (on Thursday):

Skipper and I didn’t post last week because we were stressed out about doing a segment for a Japanese TV show. We didn’t quite catch the name of the show–because it was in Japanese–but we do know that it airs once per quarter and is about cute animals. Skipper’s got the cute part down!

First, maybe we should talk about the name change that is going on. The producer contacted me about Garibaldi Rous. She had seen him on my YouTube channel. (I really should get that going again.) I had to inform them that Gari is dead. Always a hard thing to say. But, I said, I do have a new capybara.

Naturally, they wanted to know her name. That’s when things got complicated. Her full name is Mudskipper Rous, but she hardly ever goes by that. At home and on this blog, she is known as Muddy. But on Facebook she is Skipper Rous. So what to say? Isn’t Skipper a cuter name than Muddy? So, spur of the moment, I decided to change her name to Skipper. Don’t be confused, she’s still the same capybara.

Now back to why things have been stressful, aside from the name change and having a TV crew show up.

The number one issue I had is that Muddy (now Skipper) is very shy. She sometimes still shies away from me. She has been like that from the first instant I saw her. It’s just part of her personality. Not a great trait for a TV star. I warned the production people when they first approached me but they said they could work around it. (I’ll let Skipper talk about that in her next post.)

The next thing was cleaning the whole darned house in a single week. Okay, you might not think that is hard but it is when you have two cats and a capybara. Especially a capybara. It seemed to me that Skipper was punishing me for agreeing to this thing.

The third thing was that they wanted me to throw a party! The party was intended to show Skipper socializing and get people’s reactions to her. As mentioned in the paragraph above, Skippy is shy. That makes party interaction unlikely. To top that off, they wanted the party to be on a Tuesday evening. Apparently they have never heard of the “work week.” Kind of hard to scrounge people up for that, especially on short notice.

As if to top things off, after some work on my part to try to find people for a Tuesday party, they changed the day to Sunday! Ugh! Of course Sunday is easier but still, it made me mad. And people still have work and school the next day. To get even with them, I insisted on an outrageous budget for buying party food and paraphernalia. They agreed to it right away. I should have asked for more.

The party came off pretty well. We had around twenty people show up. Only one kid. That must have disappointed them because they made a special point about having kids come. Since I don’t know any kids that was always going to be unlikely. Skipper, as predicted, refused to come out of the back room. She did allow people to come pet her while she sat on the window seat. That seemed to please the TV people well enough. It was good socializing for her, too.

The next day was crazy. They insisted that I try to harness Skips so that we could go on a walk. Harnessing is something we have been working on literally for years without much success so this seemed even more unlikely than socializing at the party. Turns out I was able to get her new harness on her, but that was it. Once it was on, she wouldn’t even move. A capybara can be pretty stubborn when she wants to.

I also filled up the partially completed new pool. I am so happy that Skipper LOVES it! Once she got in, she did not want to get out…ever. Wait until it’s completely done, she is going to be one happy capybara.

A refrigerator full of capybara food

Food, food, and more food

One positive about the shoot was that they wanted video of me shopping for Skipper. And they wanted me to shop a lot. We went to the grocery store and filled an entire cart with just capybara food. Lots of corn, of course, melons, greens, yogurt, popsicles for Caplin Day (July 10th), misc. fruit. Just a lot of stuff. Now I have enough capybara food for a long time, and they paid for it.

A great thing about the shoot is that the production company made a $500 donation to the ROUS Foundation! Skipper’s introduction to the world has not just promoted capybara awareness but also helped keep capybaras around the world healthy. Good going, Skipper!

6 comments to A Stressful Week

  • Nancy Ray

    Melanie,
    I enjoyed the party so much; it was great to meet you and Skipper, as well as your friends. Skipper was such a nice hostess, even though it must have been hard for a shy capybara girl to meet so many new people in one afternoon! I’m glad she has all that delicious food to eat, too! That should be fun for a while.

  • Sandra

    What a wonderful thing to get the generous donation even if you had to work your fingers off MelT. I really loved your comment “I should have asked for more.” but hind sight is always easier than fore sight!
    I’m glad Muddy was a good, if shy, hostess and she earned her refrigerator full of food!

  • Alex Kartashov

    The great news is that she FINALLY enjoyed swimming in the pool! This one thing makes the whole thing worth it!

  • Francine

    I hope you got lots of ice cream! I wish I could have come to the party, I am great at scratching capys!

  • Barbara Brooks

    If you ever need children for a capybara event, I have a number of young friends who are ex-Amish, but still dress Amish. I’m sure it would have thrilled the crew to film the Amish children playing with a capybara. I am in La Vernia, so I could bring a carload of 4 of the children.
    They know what capybaras are and think they are adorable!

  • That sounds like an excellent idea!

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