Life lessons from an iguana

I’m loving being back in Puerto Escondido and really enjoying the month of September. It’s wilder and  greener  with more butterflies, bigger surf and fewer people. The view from my  writing perch is stellar. But, at first, I wasn’t too sure about my new companion — a black iguana.

Desk with a view — and a lizard

He showed up my first day back and has joined me for morning coffee ever since. He slinks along the balcony ledge to a sunny spot, stretches his 2-foot long body to soak up the maximum amount of rays and basically stays there.  According to the website Iguanas 101, this is good.   “A confident iguana enjoys life and observe everything around them in a calm and relaxed manner.”

“I thought he was a statue,” said David, the curtain installer who joined us one morning. “He’s muy tranquilo.”

My iguana assistant

That’s because he hasn’t made him angry. I have.  If I type too loudly or clatter a spoon in my coffee,  the iguana puffs himself up to full size, begins bobbing his head  and sweeps his tail back and forth. This means he’s “ready to attack and you should move out of range.”

Tail-whipping is my cue to run indoors.

Overall, my iguana companion is content, basking with infinite patience in the sun, calmly observing birds overhead or a fly on the wall.  In ancient Egypt and Greek symbolism, lizards represented divine wisdom and good fortune. Although also revered by the ancient Maya, the iguanas of the  modern world aren’t thriving. They’re impacted by destruction of their natural  habitat and hunting for the pet trade and food.

I’m inclined to live in harmony with my iguana pal. His tail-thumping  is a reminder not to work too hard. It’s my signal to put away the computer and to bask in the pleasures of sun and nature’s seasons.  After all,  we are in Mexico.


Even iguanas get bored

Overall, we

Michele Peterson
Michele Peterson
Dividing her time between Toronto, Mexico and Guatemala, Michele Peterson is an award-winning writer, blogger, editor and publisher who specializes in travel, cuisine and luxury lifestyles.
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Showing 6 comments
  • Carol Perehudoff

    I wish I had an iguana on my balcony.

    • Michele

      He does have a lovely iguana mate/wife and the way he’s always bashing her with his tail, I bet she’d be happy to run away to Yorkville.

  • esperanza

    Have heard of lounge lizards but this is a new one. Hope this companion stays friendly and doesn’t get any bigger. Obviously working on his tan.

  • Lesley Peterson

    Handsome lizard! Goes well with your computer. I could use one for my desk, if he brings alongs divine wisdom…

  • Colleen Friesen

    I think my loud guffaws have scared away Mr. & Mrs. Iguana. Only teeny iguanas seem to show up now and again. That being said, I don’t think I ever want to leave. This was such a smart move. I think I need to be your neighbour!

  • Josie

    Such a sweet story Michele. The simply joys found and shared are the best.
    Did you name your visitor? I hope you see him when you return.
    Wishing you happy and safe travels,

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