I dragged my boys out for a walk this morning. Believe it or not, they didn’t sizzle in direct sunlight. Though to hear Monkey tell it, I led them on an epic cross-country journey fraught with peril, misery and starvation. We’re looking into a diagnosis of “hobbit” for him.
Not far into our adventure, Chunky discovered a doodle bug. He scraped it up into his hand and instantly fell in love with the tiny creature. When it uncurled and crawled up his arm, he knew his doodle bug loved him back.
We kept walking, made it to our agreed upon turning point and headed home. When we started out, Monkey had asked how long our walk would be. I said, “About 15 or 20 minutes.” He promptly set an alarm on his iPod. I don’t know what he planned to do when the timer went off. Probably sit right down on the ground and refuse to budge another inch.
But I was saved this embarrassment. Monkey also found a doodle bug.
Both boys trailed after me, hands cupped around their little insect friends. They didn’t see the giant beetle ambling across our path until I pointed him out.
We stopped to investigate. Monkey was all for squishing him, but I argued, “No, he’s cool. Look he’s black and orange. He’s a Halloween beetle.”
We watched the Halloween beetle, speculating on his coloring. (Chunky thought somebody had painted him.) But in a careless moment, disaster struck. Monkey dropped his roley-poley right in the Halloween beetle’s trajectory.
We held our breath. Maybe the big bug would leave the smaller one alone.
Nope! The monster beetle sniffed the doodle bug, then it grabbed Monkey’s new buddy and curled around the helpless thing like a six-legged burrito.
We tried to save the doodle bug. Monkey stamped his foot close to the beetle to scare him into letting go, but it was no use. When it became clear that the roley-poley wouldn’t survive, Monkey ended the whole tragic scene with one good stomp.
Now a black and orange smear is the only thing that remains of the incident.
Chunky’s roley-poley made it home and now has some cushy new digs in a plastic tub. Chunky plans to introduce his bug to a classmate’s inexplicably female doodle bug. He’s convinced we’ll have a doodle bug family before too long. I’m pretty sure he’s thinking along these lines:
As for the other bug. Let’s hope he’s gone to a better world and won’t return to haunt that particular square of pavement.
The Writer Who Speaks
3 days ago