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My Autumn Lovely

On Friday I was having a beautiful and restful walk through the grounds of Kilkenny Castle. I was surrounded by tall, strong, wise, old trees. Leaves were drifting to the ground with every gust of the wind, see-sawing their way to the leaf-covered floor of the forest. Apart from the whispering trees there were no sounds.

As I kicked up some leaves in a reminder of childhoods past when I would kick my way through all of the leaves on the way to school, I heard a tiny noise. A squeaky noise. I stopped dead. I looked around. Nothing. My leg was mid-leafkick and I set it down gently, resting beside something hidden among the leaves. I bent down to get a closer look. There nestled between the golden leaves was a little egg. It squeaked again.

Gingerly, I touched it. Rough to the touch and a little bit prickly. I picked it up and gently placed it in my pocket. I took care of it in my pocket for the whole weekend. It accompanied me on the rest of my walk, on my trip to Podcamp the next day, to dinner afterwards in ‘Paris, Texas’, and on the drive home. Every time I checked on it I could see a little more progress…a little crack on the exterior, getting longer, wider, the pieces of the outer shell pulling apart as it dried and warmed in my coat pocket. I was excited!

On Sunday, at the town craft fair I felt something…I checked in my pocket…half the shell had come off! Joy! It was almost time. Carefully placed back in my pocket, I left it for another little while.

Finally I dared to check again and this time, there it was! Fully hatched! It was beautiful. So brown and such a shiny coat. I was so proud, I announced the birth to my bemused companions “He’s hatched!!!” I proudly exclaimed.

He loves his mammy. I think I’ll call him Chesney.

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