Aesop and My Family

Aesop and My Family

March 19, 2020

During these unprecedented times, I think back to one of Aesop’s fables that has affected me and my family.

It was November. My 20-year old niece was going to celebrate her 21st birthday in style; she was going to Las Vegas for a week! She had asked my wife, Heather, and daughter, Margot, to watch her Dutch Rabbit, Lola, while she went on her week long celebration. As my children are avid pet lovers and we do anything for family, we accepted the responsibility.  She brought over all of the essentials for Lola: cage, shelter, water bottle, rabbit food and hay.  We placed sweet Lola in Margot’s room. Both Margot and Heather tended to Lola, making sure she always had a clean cage, proper playtime in Margot’s bedroom and fresh food and water.  After our niece got back, she wondered if we could watch Lola just over the holidays.  This was no problem for us.  Nearly four years later, we STILL have Lola.

With Spring Break coming upon us this year, we didn’t have any formal plans except for family coming in from St. Louis for the week.  Margot, now 17, has a Naturalist class in high school.  During Spring Break, her teacher asked for a volunteer to watch Timothy, the class’ Russian Tortoise. Being the animal lover, Margot volunteered.  Timothy hangs out in his glass cage in our Study and is pretty low maintenance. Margot and Hayden, my 11-year-old son, feed him romaine and spinach, give him ample water and watch him peak his head out of his shell and shelter every once in a while.  After the rapid fluidity of events due to the coronavirus, Heather and I came to a stark realization that we may have Timothy longer than we intended.

With everyone staying at home these days, I have seen great signs of creativity and positivity throughout the world.  In Spain, people in lock down are opening up their balcony doors and having parties, concerts and applauding in this new, but short-lived circumstance. During St. Patrick’s Day, a dad and his son had a family parade down the street of their neighborhood. In times like these, creativity blossoms. Now having a tortoise and a hare in our household, we are thinking of constructing a small obstacle course in our back yard for the inaugural Stewart Family Tortoise and Hare race! I may even live stream it for all to witness.

We all remember that the moral of this famed Aesop fable is…Slow and Steady Wins the Race!!

My moral is…Don’t Volunteer to Watch Other’s Pets!! Ha!!

What creative ideas have you come up with recently? We would love to hear from you.