10 English Chapter 8 Mijbil Otter Gavin Maxwell

Chapter Notes and Summary
Many people like to keep pets. We have seen people keeping dogs, cats, parrots, squirrels, rabbits, etc but to keep an otter is rather unusual. On his visit to Iraq, writer was gripped with this fancy—to keep an otter as a pet. He did procure one and thoroughly enjoyed time spent with it.
Detailed Summary
The writer had gone to Iraq. Over there he took a fancy to keeping otter as a pet. His friend suggested that he can get one in Tigris marshes. Both of them were going to Basra Consultate General to receive their mail. writer’s friend received his mail, but writer had to wait for more than a week as his mail got delayed due to one reason or other. By time, his mail arrived, his ‘otter’ was also there, brought by two Arabs and a note sent by his friend. writer felt that coming of otter started a new phase of his life. When author first looked at otter, it appeared to be like a small dragon. He was coated with mud. writer had to make lots of efforts to remove last trace of dust. He named otter as Mijbil. It was also called Maxwell’s otter after a zoologist Lutrogale perspicillata maxwelli. writer found his very aloof and indifferent, but later on it became very friendly. He accompanied writer to bathroom and discovering water over there, showed its true colours because otter’s love water and can’t see it standing still. Later on otter would occasionally disappear into bathroom, when writer was not looking. He loved to play with ball. He would spent hours shuffling a ball around room and could dribble as well as throw it also. Marbles, toys were his favourites. Then writer had to go back to England British airline refused to take otter on its plane. So, writer decided on an alternative-via Paris to London on another airline. They also laid down a condition that it was to be transported in a box. When writer packed him in a box and came back after an hour he found blood trickling from its sides. otter had hurt itself in an attempt to come out. writer packed him again. But on flight he requested airhostess to let him take out otter. She agreed and there was a ruck-suck on plane. In London also, people would look strangely at otter and make guesses. Someone called it a hippo, others thought it was a giant squirrel or something like that. writer found that his pet otter was just like a child in many ways and enjoyed pranks just like children.

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