Two Mules and a Turtle

Snapping Turtle (Chelydra serpentina)

“Love your shoes, Nan,” Stacy says as she gazes in admiration at the new pair of dark green mules adorning her friend’s petite feet.

“Thanks. I just bought them,” she replies. “It’s been ages since I had a new pair. The last ones were so worn, they practically fell apart when I was walking to work the other day.”

“I’m surprised you waited so long,” her friend remarks.

“I liked those old shoes so much, I couldn’t bear to think of buying another pair,” Nan replies.

“Didn’t you buy a couple while you were there?” Stacy asks.

“No,” Nan replies. “Why would I do that?” she chuckles as her friend rolls her eyes. “I guess I should have, but you know that I don’t like to buy anything that’s totally unnecessary. I needed a pair of shoes, so I bought one pair.”

“You and your conserving to save the world,” her friend shakes her head.

“That’s right,” Nan says as she leads the way to her friend’s car.

“So, where are we off to?” her friend asks.

“I don’t know,” she replies. “Somewhere relatively healthy. Nothing too greasy or heavy.”

“There’s a new restaurant that just opened up that I think you’ll like,” the friend says as she drives.

They chit chat about this and that until suddenly Nan shouts, “Stop the car!”

Stacy stops the vehicle and follows her friend’s eyes to see a small turtle making his way slowly across the other lane.

“That car’s not going to stop,” Nan exclaims as she opens the door and gets out. She waves her hand at the approaching driver but he still doesn’t stop.

Stacy opens her door to block the lane as she sees Nan walk into the road in front of the oncoming car, which comes to a stop within inches of her friend.

Nan reaches down and lifts the turtle carefully by his shell to carry him the few feet to the other side of the road. She sets him safely in the reeds, waits to make certain he walks in the right direction and then looks up at the other driver with satisfaction. She gets back into the car.

Stacy shuts her own door, begins to drive again and remarks with annoyance, “He wasn’t going to stop. Even when you walked out there.”

Nan shakes her head in frustration and remains silent.

“That turtle was simply in that guy’s way. He didn’t think whether it had a family or anything. How old do you think he was?”

“The driver or the turtle?” Nan asks.

“The turtle,” her friend says.

“Probably five years old,” she says. “He was just a baby.”

“What do you mean?” the friend asks.

“Snapping Turtles can live up to fifty years old,” she informs with a sweet smile.

“Why are you smiling?” Stacy asks.

“Think about it,” Nan says with a wide grin. “We just saved a life.”


One response to “Two Mules and a Turtle

  1. Cute. See how paying attention to life’s stories become stories of their own? (Of course no one else will probably have a clue as to what I’m talking about!) We all need to pay attention to the oppertunities in daily lives that make the smallest things memorable!

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