If You Give a Moose a Muffin…Part 2
No Such Thing as Free!
Be sure to read PART 1!
So, everything is going along fine and dandy, with our No Such Thing as Free turtles. And then, I have to leave town. Not for a few days, or a few weeks, but for SIX weeks. I worry about those stink’n turtles every single day that I’m gone. (Oh, I forgot to mention that the grandson who brought the turtles home – because they are FREE – moved in with his dad, in another state, just a month or two after he brought the turtles home., and the turtles didn’t go with him. Of course, by that time, I’ve fallen head over heals for them!) While I’m gone, I do some serious soul searching. Am I really being fair to those little guys? I start watching YouTube videos and reading article on returning aquatic turtles back into the wild. I determine that this is the best thing for them, and steel myself into the conviction of doing just that, once I get back home.
The big day arrives. I come home with determination, knowing that I’m going to be strong and do right by my little guys who, by-the-way, are now named Turner and Tucker. Only…I think that maybe the weather is still a bit cold and they aren’t used to the outside temps…and maybe I should start re-acclimating them by adding a little “ditch water” to their tank every few days, to get them adjusted in their “new/old home”. I’m going to set them free. I can do this…yes, I can, yes I can.
NOPE… I CAN’T!
I notice that Tucker is missing a foot. WHAT? Yep, his left back foot is GONE. In fact, most of his left hind leg is gone? I ask my family what happened. I get a glassy eyed look from everyone. “What?” they say. “One of the turtles is missing a foot”? “We had no idea!” Now honestly, how can I possibly turn a disabled 3 legged turtle back into the harsh cruel world? And wouldn’t he be lonely if I keep him and send his brother away. NO NO NO, I cannot do it. I can’t. I just can’t. The NEED me…
AND they’ve grown so much since I’ve been gone, that the tank is just too small for them now.