I’m not sure if there are actually more butterflies around the place than usual, or if I’m just noticing them more, but I feel like, recently, there have been a whole lot more butterflies around the garden, the park – everywhere. I don’t know where they’ve come from, or where they were in previous springs and summers. As I said, maybe they’ve been here all along, and I just have never really noticed them – or taken note of them.
Since reading “100 Years of Solitude”, butterflies always make me think of Mauricio Babilonia, whose presence was always marked by yellow butterflies.
Recently we’ve had some large black moths (sorry, I don’t know their proper name) fluttering around the house, and settling on random places – the TV screen, the face of a carved wooden figure, on my desk – and just in general being an annoying presence. I carefully evacuated several of them (and released them back into the wilderness of the back yard), but they didn’t bother me so much as they bothered certain other members of the household.
I’ve previously wondered why people detest moths but like butterflies. Those big black moths could pass for butterflies if they’d just adopt that characteristic gentle wing position that butterflies have at rest. (I’m not sure if this is scientifically true, but I remember being taught in primary school that the way to differentiate a moth from a butterfly was to look at the way it holds its wings when at rest – butterflies have their wings up, whereas moths’ wings are spread flat.) I’m sure there are plenty of other differences, but it’s funny how two similar things can evoke very different reactions.
Of course, moths probably don’t take offence to this; the discrimination probably doesn’t register in their minds. This means that my sympathy is probably wasted on them (hence I stopped being sympathetic and banished them from the house).
Thinking about all this makes me want to re-read “100 Years of Solitude”, even though I only finished reading it fairly recently. There was actually quite a bit about moths and butterflies and ants – the never-ending battle with ants. I do not like ants. I don’t think it’s possible to like ants. I’m sure the ants don’t care, though.
I’m not sure where I was going to go with this post… Thinking about insects tends to lead to contemplation of the meaninglessness of their lives – their short lifespans leave them only enough time to survive and reproduce. Now, thinking of ants and butterflies, and even moths sometimes, makes me think of “100 Years of Solitude”, which is, in my opinion, a very profound and compelling novel. Isn’t it interesting how something so small and seemingly insignificant can lead to such profound and philosophical thoughts?