Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Love Story

Since we had already taken a break from Goat’s Log for festivities with Hyggehus, Pinky suggested that we tell a part of the Summer Island story that Goat is unlikely to mention except in passing. That is, the revelation that Willabear was in love. It came as a surprise to Monster E. too! (Only one other Animal of Big Bed Land has fallen in love, and that was when Mooselers admitted to a serious crush on Nell Shipman, the extraordinary writer/actress/film editor of the silent screen.)

Willabear was a relatively recent arrival in BBL when he went to Mouse Fairy Island this summer along with Lefty, Goat, and Chinaberry. Willabear has always been a dapper sort, and the Animals find this one of his fine qualities, along with his extremely relaxed attitude (which is genuine and not for show.) The combination of dapper and relaxed- even to the point of floppy!- is most unusual and piquant.

At the Island, Willabear pointed out that he needed a bath. Monster E. can be
remiss in this area and often needs to be reminded. Since there is no running water at Summer Island, Violet Mouse Fairy helped fill a large basin with water from a hand pump in the kitchen for washing dishes that brings water up from the river. Violet has great and unusual insight into the Animal heart. When Willabear told her that he would like a fragrant shampoo with his bath, she began to guess the secret that he later revealed to her: that he was in love- and that his love lived in Big Bed Land.

As soon as she mentioned this, I realized at once who the Animal of his affections must be. “Glamora the Giraffe!” I said to myself, I said, “Self, it must be Glamora.” I had always suspected that great mystery dwelt behind those dramatic eyelashes of questionable authenticity. Through Willabear’s eyes, I perceived the complex beauty of her imagination and it felt like walking into a very three-dimensional snowflake—with planes of color on each crystal facet that
kept turning into different landscapes: an unfurling frond of fern that became a paisley jungle of skirt drying on a chair next to a radiator clanking its way through the beat that chorus girls danced to when Forbidden Passion was a shade of lipstick red and frost furred the thin edge of the windowpane… Glamora was right to lower her lashes! A less capacious soul than Willabear’s could get completely lost in her eyes.

The Animals and Mouse Fairies are helping the happy couple plan a winter wedding. Glamora has already tried on her veil which came from the Council thrift shop. Who would have guessed that a place called the “Thrifty Shoppe” would be a place you could purchase a wedding veil for a giraffe? And on dollar-a-bag day too! What wonders life holds.

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