It all started on a perfectly normal summers day.
There I was working away at my laptop, as I did every day, when suddenly the girls and Romanian Mum began shouting for me to come quickly.
Thinking something was wrong I immediately sprang up and headed for the front door. “Look!’ They all said pointing across the garden. As I looked out,
I couldn’t believe what I saw.
A small green Tortoise was trundling up our garden path. Before I carry on there is something you should know. We live in the centre of a small town, literally in the centre, just a short distance away from the main shopping area. So you can imagine our surprise at this unexpected visitor to our garden, you wouldn’t expect to see a tortoise anywhere in our town, never mind in our garden.
Where it came from we have no idea, but there it was. The girls immediately asked if we could keep it?
Now as you may or may not know, Romania is over run with wild dogs (well is some areas), they are everywhere and for this reason letting the tortoise leave the garden and face the dogs was not an option so I immediately said yes to keeping our little green visitor.
After a little research we discovered that ‘it’ was probably a ‘her’, and so she became Pappa the tortoise, named after Peppa Pig by our youngest Miss A.
Within a couple of days she had her very own enclosure in the garden. The girls were excited to have a pet and so pretty soon there were regular visitors wanting to come and see out little friend.
We took turns to feed her and change her water, and once or twice a day she was allowed to roam freely in the garden for a while, even a small tortoise needs to stretch its legs from time to time. And so life carried on like that for a couple of months, but then the summer closed and Autumn blew in.
The nights grew colder and days were getting shorter, life was set to change for little Peppa.
For she was a member of the Hermans Tortoise breed, and in winter they hibernate till the weather turns again and Spring bounces in. So keeping her through winter was something we didn’t want to do. She was a wild animal, and though we had cared and protected her through summer it was time to return her to her natural habitat.
And so the day came when we decided to take a drive out of town to a location where we could cross in low tide, to an Island in the Danube. It was here on this island that we handed Peppa back for Mother Nature to protect.
It was a sad day but also a happy one as she was going back to where she belonged.
If she is still alive we do not know, if she has started hibernating already we do not know, if she will make it to spring, we do not know.
But what we do know is, we will never forget her, nor will we will we ever stop telling the story of ‘The Summer Peppa Came to Stay’.