So I guess we’re all coming out of our shells.

Remember when all we did was hide in our houses and keep track of our mask inventory? Those days (fingers crossed) seem to be in the rear view mirror. Now we’re out and about and back to real life – stuck in traffic and not being able to find parking spaces. Well, that assumes, of course, that you can afford gas for your car…

We had a little traffic jam on our street last weekend. The CE was coming back from the beach with Lily and had to slam on the brakes to avoid smashing this little guy to smithereens:

On the long list of things we know absolutely nothing about, turtles might be in the top ten. What to do? Since I thought it might be someone’s pet, I posted on the NextDoor app. Unlike ourselves, everyone on social media turns out to be an expert.

“It’s a pond turtle. Needs to be in water ASAP.”

“It’s a desert tortoise. If you put it in water it will die.”

Oh dear? What to do? The CE fashioned an enclosure for our visitor from an old dog pen and set out some vegetables and meal worms and a tray of water. Then we went inside to ponder our next move.

Little did we know that the turtle was likewise pondering a next move. When we came back outside, he or she had vanished! Harry or Harriet Houdini as we will fondly remember it, had managed to squeeze through the tiniest gap in the cage. So there we were, literally beating the bushes. Our found turtle had almost instantly become a lost turtle! “He couldn’t go far,” said the CE, peering through the bushes near where he had set up the pen.

Enter Lily the wonder dog.

I noticed her standing at attention wayyyyy across the yard. And sure enough, she had tracked the turtle for us. This turtle is going to win any tortoise vs. hare race it enters, because in a few minutes it managed to cover several hundred feet.

We snatched up the turtle again and as we did, it stuck it’s head out of its shell far enough that we could see the red marks above its eyes. A red-eared slider, we decided. A pond turtle. While we waited for someone to claim it, we needed to give it access to water. The CE hefted a stack of heavy stones into our fountain to create a shelf:

No sooner had the turtle happily eased into the water than someone posted “Don’t put it in a fountain! The chlorine and chemicals will kill it!”

Ooph. We needed Plan B. Maybe, just maybe, we should take it back to the place it was found and set it on the other side of the fence? By now we’d alerted other neighbors to the drama and this Plan B was roundly rejected. “No, no you can’t do that! What if it goes back into the road? It will be killed!” said one neighbor eyeing me as if I already had turtle blood on my hands.

And that is how Plan B ended up being B for bath tub. Complete with fluffy palace guards:

B is also for befouling the bathtub. It wasn’t pretty. Something had to be done.

That’s when I remembered that we have an acquaintance in our neighborhood who just happens to have a very fine duck pond. Hmmmm. Would he consider welcoming a new addition? The CE got in touch with him and the answer was yes! The hand-off occurred the next morning and the turtle was clearly pleased with its new digs:

This neighbor, familiar with the ways of turtles, explained to us that it’s not uncommon for them to migrate in the spring, especially females that may be looking for a place to lay eggs. For whatever reason, this turtle decided it was time to be on the move. I’ve decided that Mr. or Ms. turtle is my new spirit animal – it seems like it’s time to come out of our two-year-long hibernation and figure out what “normal life” looks like. Some days I’m not sure I can remember how to do it, but I know I have to try. As the saying goes about the turtle “you don’t make any progress unless you stick your neck out”. Time to come out of our shells!

About polloplayer

Empty nester searching for meaning of life through the occasional chicken epiphany.
This entry was posted in Animal/Vegetable/Mineral and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to So I guess we’re all coming out of our shells.

  1. Christina Tunger says:

    Loved this!

    Sent from my iPhone


  2. dizzyguy says:

    Madame Turtle (likely the case) seemed very satisfied with her new environment. So she went from almost being a grease spot on the street to a life of turtle luxury with many other fellow creatures. A Happy Ending if there ever was one!

  3. citymama says:

    ADORE THIS POST. BRAVO!!! come out come out wherever you are! ❤️

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