The Tortoise and…Well, No Hare
We live in a neighborhood that has seen more than its fair share of “missing cat” signs taped to stop signs and light poles. They’ve almost become part of every day life here.
But I had to do a double take when I saw this sign for a missing tortoise last year.
By now you know my mind…and the thought of a missing tortoise certainly set that mind to reeling.
First of all, how bad does life have to get for a tortoise to actually put forth the effort to leave home? I can understand cats wandering off to explore. Or dogs roaming the neighborhood in search of puppy love.
But I mean, what is a big motivator for a tortoise to make tracks? Was he thinking, “Lettuce? Again? Are you *kidding* me? I’m outta here!”? Or maybe he had noticed that his owner had recently cut out recipes for Turtle Soup? The possibilities are making my head hurt.
Knowing that I can’t get into the mind of a tortoise, I move to my second more logistical question: exactly how long does it take for a tortoise to make a break for it?
It seems to me that you could wash the car, mow the lawn, and read a couple chapters of War and Peace before the tortoise would even be able to make it down the driveway! “Yes, Officer. I only turned my back for 4 1/2 hours, and he was GONE!”
Yeah, I think this is the kind of pet problem that could have been prevented.
Moving on to my third issue. Why the picture? Are there so many tortoises roaming the neighborhood that you need to provide identifying marks so that I’ll be looking for the right one?
I mean, frankly, if you told me to be on the look out for a tortoise…that would pretty much be all the information I needed. Listen, if I found a tortoise, I somehow doubt that I would hold up the picture next to him and decide, “Nah…I think the one I’m looking for had greener spots on his feet. Off you go…sorry for the inconvenience.”
No. I would just see if he answered to his name. Duh.
Now please understand, I am joking because…admit it…it is a little bit funny. But if it were my tortoise, I certainly would be heartbroken. So I do feel bad for the family. Especially now, after reading last week that a missing tortoise from Alamogordo NM was found 10 days later…50 miles away!! Apparently, when highly motivated, tortoises can seriously MOVE!
Hmmm…makes me think maybe they need to expand the search! It’s been over a year since he went missing. This little guy could be in Bolivia by now.
Jerrrrrrrry!?!?! Where arrrrrrrre you?????