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“Have you ever tasted a mushroom this good, Bindle?!”
Naturally, I nodded my head in approval. The mushroom was good, like all the other mushrooms we ate but Sholby relished whatever he ate like it was the first time he tried it and the best tasting thing that existed. I have to admit, eating with him always made our limited menu more enjoyable. Now that I think of it, everything Sholby experienced, according to Sholby, was downright electrifying.
Like all the times before, Sholby patted his full belly with pleasure then removed his favorite long strip of red ribbon from the hook on the wall behind him. He chirped with excitement as he tied the red ribbon around the top of his little head. He always proudly posed with his headband, for just an instant, before rubbing his paws together and asking, “Shall we see what the day brings?”
I never saw what there was to look forward to. The life of a flying squirrel was pretty limited–we forage and try not to get eaten–but Sholby anticipated each day as if there was great potential for a stupendous event. Please don’t mistake my words for disapproval, I have always been grateful for his infectious enthusiasm.
We emerged from our tree hole and quested into different directions. I made the modest goal to find me a grub as big as my foot, so I leapt off the trunk and glided to the ground.
No sooner did I start digging the soft dark soil did I hear a ruckus in the treetops above me. Leaves showered down from violently shaking branches and woodpeckers squawked. I heard, “Wahoo!” and looked up to see the silhouette of Sholby soaring above me, the ribbon trailing from his head, horizontally fluttering behind him like a long banner. It wasn’t unusual to see him flying from tree to tree. That we could grab airlift under our bodies was a perk that Bindle maximized, even beyond its practical uses.
Sometime later I met Sholby back in our tree hole still wearing his ribbon. “Hiya! Did you find your foot-sized grub?” He always greeted me with excited interest, even if he saw me only hours before. “Naw, but I ate some tasty little ones.” “Ooooooh!” he responded, and he really meant it!
“Sholby, you know I appreciate you but how is it that you can find excitement in everything? We see the same things everyday and eat from the same menu every meal?”
“You know I appreciate you, too, Bindle but how is it you find one grub better than the other when they all taste good? Each new day has never happened before and when it’s over it will never happen again, ever. What’s there not to be excited about when the unknown unfolds with us, and lots of yummy eats, in it?” and he pulled the tail of his red ribbon over his furry shoulder to hang in front like a valiant sash.
Just then a small white moth flitted into our hole. “Ooh! Ooh!’ Sholby pointed excitedly.