Monday, September 20, 2010

The Great Tadpole Release

SEVERAL months ago, the children and I came across tadpoles during a walk by the river, and brought some home with us. The kitchen sideboard was the only Alexander-proof place for our open-topped aquarium... until he learned how to climb on a stool. Then the tadpoles endured a rigourous training in evasive action. The predator could strike at any time, and their only hope lay in the predator's mother catching him on the sideboard. A few months down the road, each time we returned home, we checked anxiously to make sure the tadpoles hadn't set off on the great escape. They all had four legs, and the tails of two of them were getting smaller and smaller. It was time to take them home. So we trekked to the stream where we had found them, said thank you for allowing us to watch them grow, then said goodbye. They didn't swim at all at first, and I was concerned we had released them to their doom, but after a short walk we returned and found them happily paddling about.

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