Sep. 14, 2017
Several minutes passed with no response so Mr. Toad croaked again. His voice echoed through the woods as he waited, and to his delight a faint croak reverberated back to him that was not his own. His excitement was soon crushed as he realized this toad was still just as far away as it was the day before. ‘Perhaps he or she is in trouble?’ he thought to himself, starting to worry slightly. Most toads make a lot more progress in a day of travel, and if he wasn’t moving he would have heard this toad long ago. ‘I must go find him,’ Mr. Toad decided very quickly.
And so Mr. Toad hopped into the shallow stream, and hopped a few more times until he landed on the shore on the far side. As the water dripped from his skin he croaked again, hoping for a better response. The other toad was still far away and so Mr. Toad began his first journey. Now, Mr. Toad’s legs were very long, but his arms were very short. With every hop he would spring several inches into the air, land on his arms, then fold his legs in under him. With every jump his bottom would bounce off the ground as he tried to pull his legs in fast enough. He wasn’t sure if it was just the nature of being a toad or if it was because he spent his life as a sedentary being, never roaming munch, but after the first 15 hops or so his behind was beginning to ache as it slammed into the ground.
Before long, each jump was accompanied by a quiet ‘oof’ or ‘ouch’ uttered from Mr. Toad’s lips. As he pressed forward into the woods the twigs slapped his face and the leaves rubbed uncomfortable across his back. ‘Why would anyone wish to leave home?’ he wondered to himself, but before he could turn back the faint croak echoed through the woods from up ahead and he pushed on.
‘Oof! Ouch!’ Mr. Toad’s complaints became slightly louder as he pushed further and further into the woods. Twigs snapped beneath his toes and swung up to strike him in the stomach. Leaves batted his face and dirty covered his undersides. Finally, as he reached a small clearing Mr. Toad stopped for a break. Breathing somewhat heavily for a toad, he was not accustomed to such activity you understand, he listened for the faint croaks up ahead. When he heard them he realized he had made little progress and he began to despair.
‘What was I thinking?’ he wondered to himself, starting to feel very miserable. ‘I should never have left my home, toads were not meant to travel so.’ His behind ached and burned with a horrible intensity as he sat in the small clearing. ‘Toads were definitely not meant to travel.’ With a mounting feeling of defeat Mr. Toad resolved to turn around and return to his bend in the creak but a quiet twinkling in the bushes ahead halted his thoughts and demanded his attention.