I watched the movie, We bought a Zoo today. It claims to be based on a true story. Seems a bit unrealistic but all the same is worth watching for the values and ideas it offers. The basic storyline is about a man who has lost his wife and is now left alone to bring up his two children. The teenaged son has his own ways of going about and is barely comfortable with the father. The little seven year old daughter is still all awe and happy about what she has than mourn about what she has lost. In an attempt to 'resurrect' his life, Benjamin Mee purchases a new house, far off from the city – only that it has an abandoned zoo attached to it. He takes it upon himself to reopen the zoo with the assistance of the limited staff and of course, without any knowledge of zoo-keeping. Slowly but surely he wins the confidence of the staff – and the animals – and by the end of the movie, all is well.
However, at one crucial point when the head of the staff questions Benjamin as to why he purchased this whole thing with absolutely no idea of animals or zoo, he replies, “Why not?” Only at the end of the movie, it is shown, how exactly the same reply (or question) opens up a whole new life for him earlier when he meets his would-be wife for the first time.
Interestingly the question, 'why not?' is a very revealing one. A sincere look in such a direction throws open so many possibilities which we often – gladly and comfortably – shut out owing to fear, laziness and refusal to move out of our comfort zones. Even in my own life, sometime ago I remember asking back, some of those who always questioned me why I choose to be a Brother and not a Priest. To some I had indeed replied, “Why not?” (Of course, don't ask me if that made any impact on them or least of all, convinced them a bit!)