Where are they now?

I saw a teddy bear lying on the side of the road. All the way to my appointment I thought about that bear. What child lost it? How did it get on the side of the road which was a street passing over a freeway? It wasn’t where anyone would open a door, as if to park, and the bear fell out. Was the child mad and tossed it out the window? Was an older (or younger) sibling responsible for tossing it out? It is cold here so the windows are not likely to have been open. Why didn’t someone return to retrieve the bear? Surely somewhere, a child is in tears because of the lost bear.

My mind was full of questions and as I waited in the office for my appointment. My mind began to spin a tale of the lost bear. There he was, his nose to the pavement, and his fuzzy tan rear sticking up. Could the wind come along and put him upright? Would someone rescue him and what would be his story from there on? And if I spun this tale,  I would let him have many adventures, but I would return him to his owner in the end and the tears would stop. I didn’t return by the same route so I don’t know if the bear found its owner, or a home somewhere.

I had a teddy bear. It was not really fuzzy, or it might have been when it was new. It had felt paws that were stuffed with straw. But the best thing was his music. It worked by pumping the back up and down.  I have memories of being in my room, sometimes tears falling down my face, and pumping my bear again and again to hear his music.

I found my old bear when my son was a young teen. It was stashed in a box my parents had forwarded to me long ago. I told Bill about the music and pumping the back. It no longer made music. The bear disappeared into Bill’s room and later I found the bear with a slit up the back and no music box. I guess it is a good thing Bill did not take up back surgery on bears.

Bill had a bear when he was very young. It was almost as big as he was. When he came down the stairs on Christmas morning, he ran to the bear waiting for him on a chair and called out “Bobby”, picked up the bear and hugged him. He still did not have very many words in his vocabulary but it certainly was Bobby that he said.  I have no idea where the name came from but it was Bobby bear from then on and lived on his bed. Over time Bobby became flat like a pillow. He didn’t have music but he certainly was loved and he, too is gone to bear heaven I guess.

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5 Responses to Where are they now?

  1. Lisa H. says:

    I love how you ‘spin’ a tale about that little lost bear. Great slice.

  2. Tam says:

    Your story reminds me of The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo. It is strange that a bear should be tossed, lost, or thrown and left to die? Another story awaits to be told.

  3. Tara says:

    Funny how something sparks a thought that leads to a story that leads us down memory lane. And, funny too that kids have way of naming their stuffed animals immediately, as though they just know that this bear, cat, dog, whatever, was coming their way and they were ready.

  4. Linda Baie says:

    I think you need to spin off several stories from this. I loved each one. We stopped & rescued a lost bear on an isolated highway once. My (then) young daughter was thrilled, adopted the bear & it became a favorite. I didn’t think of writing about bears, but we have many stories in our lives about them. They are very special. Thanks for noticing that ‘lost’ bear.

  5. Juliann says:

    What great connections you make in this slice

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