Monday, May 24, 2010

Tank the Turtle

The first day of my new life

Today I went to a brand new home. I was just packed up and carted away. I was frightened. New and unfamiliar places can be scary. My shelter came along with me which made me feel a little secure. And of course my favorite foods were also with me. I love to eat and hide beneath my shelter. I traveled in this rectangular plastic box with my food and shelter. It was a short ride but I felt safe with some of my belongings.

I cried a little when I left my old home. I don’t want anyone to know that I cried because they may tease me and call me a ‘crybaby’. I know that I am a baby but I want to be treated like I am not a baby. After all I am a little bigger than a tiny baby. And I have been taken away from the only home I have ever known so I must be growing up.

I don’t even know why I had to leave my old home? Did I do something bad? Did they not want me anymore? What happened to my family? Will I ever see them again? It seems rather strange but on the ride to my new home I thought I heard my dad and even thought I could smell him. Turtles have an excellent nose for smelling. I know my dad’s scent and it seems to be very close. I feel better knowing my dad is close by and I may see him soon.

This is a very strange feeling to be traveling and going to a new place where you have never been before. I hope this new place will be as nice and peaceful as my old place. I don’t really like this small box that I’m in. I’m so glad my shelter is with me because I will hide under my familiar shelter till I am not so scared anymore.

It seems like the ride is over because all the movement has stopped. I try to look out the walls that confine me but it’s all kind of smoky looking. It has the smell of plastic. The surface is smooth and quite difficult to walk on. I begin to hear voices and they sound excited. I run under my shelter. Something lifts my shelter right off of me. I’m exposed. I huddle in the corner of my boxy confine that is not my home.

Then, some very large humans start talking to me. I don’t know much about human talk because I’m still a baby. If I had to guess what they were saying it would be, “Oh isn’t he just the cutest little turtle you ever saw. What a sweetie.”
They have smiles on their faces and they seemed very nice. I think they like me. And they didn’t call me a baby even though I am a baby. I’ve spent my entire life around humans that love me and care for me. So I know I will be in a safe place with these new humans. I’m still a little scared and nervous so I will stay under my shelter till I feel safe.

A big hand reaches in and picks me up. I’m scared. The hand is gentle and rubs the back of my shell. It feels nice but I keep my head and legs tucked inside my shell. I will not come outside my shell. They are being very gentle with me and are still talking in soft voices. I think I will be safe.

My new people place me in this huge box with invisible walls that I cannot escape through. They lined the bottom of my new home with pebbles. These pebbles are a little hard to navigate. My feet are very tiny and I am having some difficulty climbing over these pebbles and to me they are like climbing mountains. What can I say to them? I’m sure they don’t understand turtle talk. Maybe they will see the trouble I am having navigating these pebbles that seem like boulders. And I’m really thirsty.

I see the new people peering at me through the invisible walls and when I see this I run for my shelter to hide. They still have big smiles on their faces and they seem real nice but I’m still not all that comfortable around them. I see a fresh container of fruit and vegetables. My appetite is not very strong. I need to get used to living in this place with the invisible walls before I start eating on a regular cycle.

Oops, my new people have placed a tub of water in my new environment. It is quite slippery. I need to get out. I’m scared. Oops again. Darn. I’ve flipped over on my back and can’t get out of this mess. I will not cry. If I move my legs really, really fast I should flip back over on my tummy. Oh no, I see movement outside the invisible walls. It’s the new people reaching into my space. I will just pull my legs and head right inside my shell for safety reasons.

Wow, what happened? I’m right side down again. I see the smiling faces of the humans looking through my invisible walls. I head off for the protection of my shelter. And who says turtles are slow? So I guess these smiling face people are looking out for me after all. Maybe I will like them. Now if only they would remove some of these stones. This is rough terrain for a little one like me but the heat lamp feels good on my shell.

I’m starting to think that my new people are filled with love and compassion for me. They scooped me out and placed me back into my traveling bin. At first I thought I would be sent to another location. I was as still as a lump of dirt in the travel pen. I tucked my head and legs inside my shell and did not even start to cry. Well it was just a little cry and my legs did tremble a bit.

My stay in the traveling pen was not long. I was very gently placed back in my new home with the invisible walls. I was placed right on top of some soft brown dirt. Oh, the joy. Dirt smells so good. I suck in the aroma and began to dig furiously with my two front legs. It was easy work and the dirt was light and fluffy. I could smell the aroma of peat moss. I started my first burrow in my new environment.
So, here I sit about three inches beneath the soil feeling pretty happy and secure. I’m still missing my family but this could become a nice place to live. I still have that strong feeling that dad is close by. I can even smell the fresh strawberries that the humans have placed in the little dish by my shelter. I am so glad those rough pebbles have been replaced. I think my crying days are over.
I’m feeling pretty good about this new home and these humans that are taking good care of me. I just might stay here forever and ever. Right now I’m all snug and warm inside my burrow so I just might take a little nap and enjoy my new life.

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