On the trail the other day I came upon a Woolly-Bear. Every time I encounter one of these creatures, the child inside me jumps around in a little dance of joy. Why is that? There are lots of crawly things in the world. Most of them hold no interest for me; some are repellent; some, I confess, get promptly stomped. Somehow, the Woolly Bear feels like a happy omen, a cute friend, a delightful sighting. Is it only the name? What if it was called “Spike Devil” or had no name at all?
The internet says that the Woolly Bear is no pest. It eats almost anything and doesn’t damage human crops. Also, it really does look like a tiny stuffed animal. When it curls up into a ball it makes an intriguing toy to roll around your hand. Shyness abates quickly, then they uncurl and crawl around your fingers, exploring. No wonder many states have annual Woolly Bear festivals. This harmless, charming creature that invites physical contact and close inspection has earned its dear name.
My 60th year in 60,000 words
Day 256: 176 words, TOTAL = 41,972; 18,028 remaining
Robin Clifford Wood is a writer and writing teacher. She lives in central Maine with her husband and dogs, loves to be outdoors, and enjoys ever-expanding horizons through her grown children and their multi-species families.