It was Gilmerís first day out of the
cave since heíd been born. His mum, Iona, was ready to take him to explore
the world. "Gilmer, stay close to Mum now. There are a lot of things out
there that can hurt you. Follow me and Iíll show you some of natureís
wonders." She took him by the paw and led him into the woods.
"Whatís that, Mum?" Gilmer asked. He
pointed at a yellow flower.
"Thatís a daffodil. Itís a flower
that blooms in spring. Isnít it lovely?" Iona said.
"It has a trumpet," Gilmer giggled.
"Bees crawl inside and gather pollen
to make nectar and honey," Iona explained.
"Honey? Whatís that?"
"Youíll learn soon enough. Itís one
of my favorite foods."
"Whatís that, Mum?"
"That is a butterfly. It flaps its
wings up and down and flutters from flower to flower."
"Does a flutterby make honey too?"
"Itís called a butterfly, not a
flutterby and no, it doesnít make honey. Only bees," Iona answered.
Mother and son walked thru the
woods. She showed Gilmer the fish swimming in the stream, the birdís eggs
in the nests, and what flowers he should eat and ones he shouldnít. "Why
canít I eat a thistle, Mum?" he asked.
"You could, if you really wanted,
but they are covered with prickles," Iona said.
Gilmer was curious. He grabbed hold
of the thistleís stem. "Ouch!" he cried and ran to his mum. "Iíve got
prickles in my paw."
"I just warned you about that. Here,
let me pull them out." She made sure there were no more stickers in
Gilmerís paw and then held him in her lap. " I think maybe youíd be safer
if you sat here for a while and just looked around."
Gilmer curled up in her lap and
watched the butterflies, bees, and bluebirds. It was a grand time for the
bear cub on his first day out of the cave.