Edward T Bear riding high!

20 April 2014

I had told Edward T Bear all about meeting the many tortoises in Aunty Lissi’s garden. So the next day, he insisted that he wanted to come along for the feeding.

“You’re a very little bear, Edward,” Reggie cautioned him. “Those big tortoises are much bigger than you. So you will need to keep out of their way. They can’t see so well, and I don’t want you to be squished when they walk all over you in their eagerness to get at the food.”

Edward nodded obediently.

We followed Aunty Lissi out into the garden, and watched as she scattered the lettuce and cucumbers in heaps all over the tortoise enclosure.

“Oooh look!” exclaimed Edward, pointing at a very large tortoise that was marching purposefully towards us, easily climbing over the small wall of bricks that was supposed to keep the little-little tortoises inside the enclosure. “That must be Herbie. She’s HUGE!”

I introduce Edward T Bear to Herbie the Tortoise and her friend Blackie
I introduce Edward T Bear to Herbie the Tortoise and her friend Blackie

“Get out of the way!” I cried. Edward T Bear leaped sideways, just in time. Herbie glanced at him in surprise.

“I see you brought another friend, Flat Kathy,” she remarked, staring at the furry bundle at her feet. “What’s your name then?”

“E-e-e-edward,” stammered Edward, shuffling backwards, clearly terrified. “Ed-ed-edward T-t-t Bear.”

Herbie stretched her neck out as far as it could, and gave him a sniff. Edward T Bear closed his eyes and leaned backwards against the line of bricks. He began to hum, with his eyes closed. I’ve noticed he does that sometimes when he gets very scared.

Herbie retracted her head a bit, and looked at him, first with one eye, then with the other.

“Pleased to meet you, Edward T Bear,” she said, chuckling. “Now excuse me, while I have my breakfast, before Blackie over there finishes the lot!”

Herbie stomped around the pile of leaves, shouldering Blackie – who was tucking in very well – out of the way.

Edward cautiously opened his eyes, one at a time, and stopped humming. “Is it safe, Flat Kathy?” he whispered.

“Yes, yes,” I reassured him. “I think Herbie likes you.”

He didn’t seem entirely convinced.

Mr Tiger says hello - and dares Edward T Bear!
Mr Tiger says hello – and dares Edward T Bear!

“Miaow!” Mr Tiger made his usual light-footed dramatic appearance, appearing out of thin air, flicking his tail past my face as he passed. “What have I missed?”

“Edward T Bear just met Herbie,” I explained helpfully.

“Did you get squished, Eddie?” asked Mr Tiger, playfully tapping Edward with his front paw.

“N-n-no!” exclaimed Edward, ducking out of the way.

“I dare you to climb ontop of Herbie,” said Mr Tiger, evidently in a naughty mood. “Go on.”

“I can’t do that while she’s eating!” exclaimed Edward T Bear. “It wouldn’t be polite!”

“It’s the only time you can do it,” stated Mr Tiger, “while she’s distracted with her food.”

“Oh honestly!” I exclaimed. “You’re so naughty, Mr Tiger. Go away.”

“You’re just a scaredy-bear,” giggled Mr Tiger, scampering off to lap up some water from the tortoises’ pond.

Edward bravely approaches Herbie
Edward bravely approaches Herbie

Well, that clearly lit a fire in Edward T Bear, as he straightened his shoulders and stood upright. He had a very determined look in his eyes, as he began to sidle closer to Herbie and Blackie, who were hungrily chomping their way through the lettuce leaves and cucumber pieces. Herbie raised her head.

“What are you up to, Edward T Bear?” she asked, sternly.

“Um… er…”

Then, much to our mutual surprise, she winked. Yes, Herbie winked! I promise!

“Don’t you dare climb ontop of me,” she said, so loudly that Mr Tiger – who was busy chasing a lizard – froze and looked over at us. The lizard quickly slithered underneath an upturned flower-pot. Mr Tiger pawed crossly at the pot, muttering to himself.

While he was thus occupied, Herbie whispered, “Quick, Edward, climb aboard.”

And Edward T Bear, mustering all his courage, took one biiiiig leap, and landed right ontop of Herbie.

And then hops aboard for a ride!
And then hops aboard for a ride!

“Woohoo!” I cheered, as he sat upright. “What a brave bear he is!”

Mr Tiger looked admiringly at Edward. “Gosh, Eddie… I didn’t know you had it in you. You really are a brave bear.” He trotted off, no doubt to hunt another hapless lizard or something.

“Edward T Bear! What are you doing!” exclaimed Reggie, who had noticed the flurry of activity in the tortoise enclosure. “Are you riding ontop of Herbie?! No no no…”

She picked him up unceremoniously, and tucked him into Richard’s shirt pocket. Edward looked a bit sheepish, but also very pleased with himself. I couldn’t help giggling at the look on his face.

Herbie winked at us, and continued to munch her breakfast.

What an exciting morning!

What a brave bear!
What a brave bear!

2 thoughts on “Edward T Bear riding high!

    1. Although I think Flat Kathy and Mr Tiger were very impressed by such daredevilry on Edward T Bear’s part, I certainly wasn’t! What if he’d been squished?! If we don’t keep him in check, he’ll be running with the bulls in Pamplona next!


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