1morningYesterday turned out to be a very special and interesting day. This was the day I had set aside to take Tootsie to the Park so she could climb trees, and when I woke up, early, early on this fine morning to feed a very insistent Mr. Squee, what did I find but little Tootsie dressed and completely ready to go, waiting for me on the couch with the Whimsie Traveling Bag so close to her side.

Well! How could I possibly resist that eager expression of anticipation? After all, this was the event Tootsie has been training for, for months and months on end. If ever a Whimsie was ready to climb trees, it was this Whimsie on this day. So, as soon as Mr. Squee’s bowl of Morning Meat was served, I told Tootsie to hold on for just a moment while I put on some proper clothes. She smiled heartily, waited patiently, and in no time at all, we were off.

But speaking of proper clothing, before I really get started on describing our Adventure, let’s take a moment to admire how smartly little Tootsie has dressed herself. As you can see, she’s wearing her old favorite: “dungarees.” (That silly Whimsie! She’s so old-fashioned, I doubt we’ll ever persuade her to call them blue jeans!) And these “dungarees” certainly are huge, allowing Tootsie plenty of room for movement and flexibility as she scurries up and down the branches of trees. But because these pants are so huge, there’s a real possibility they could slip off, and then where would she be? But Tootsie has thought of that, and wisely added a belt. Even though her belt is nothing more than a red and white striped shoelace, she pulls it tightly around her waist, and it gets the job done.

2treehelpNow, there is actually not much more to talk about regarding her outfit, because the only other item of note is a gray striped tee shirt, which quietly complements her dungarees. Tootsie, it seems, is the kind of tree-climber who does not believe in shoes. She’s been practicing barefoot all this time, so I don’t even have the opportunity to tell you what kind of shoes she finds best for climbing, because the answer is…none!

Of course there is one more item I should mention. Even though we set out for the Tree Climbing Park quite early in the morning, when the sun was just beginning to peek up from beneath the horizon, I felt certain we would still be out there in full daylight, so I persuaded Tootsie to take a hat to protect her delicate complexion. (These redheads do freckle so!) Tootsie agreed to comply, and what kind of hat do you think she chose from the vast collection of Whimsie hats? Why, denim, of course! And doesn’t it just complete her outfit so beautifully?

Some of the time that Tootsie spent in the Park she’s wearing the hat, but a lot of the time she simply isn’t, because to tell you the truth, it was just too difficult for me to keep up with her. At first I stuck very close to her, a bit concerned about her climbing so high up into trees that were many, many times taller than she; I even started out lending her a hand, ready to catch her should she fall. But she exhibited such expertise in her tree-climbing skills that I quickly discovered no assistance was needed. After that, she ran from place to place and from tree to tree, climbing up and down, and then up and down again and again. There was no stopping her!

But after a while, when I finally did manage to get her to stop and take a breath, she took a good look around and had to admit that there was a lot more to the Park than just trees. It was only then that she finally noticed the river, the stone steps, the benches, the bushes, and the flowers.

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Not only did Tootsie see the river and the flowers, but she also noticed something else wonderful about trees that she had quite forgotten, since all of her recent training has taken place climbing through low-lying bushes, and not actual trees. With bushes, you don’t get a whole of lot of roots, but with these 8rootswell-established trees, Tootsie was able to see lots and lots of intricate and interesting root formations, and they totally fascinated her. The roots spoke to her of how very long some of these majestic trees have been alive in this world, and how very permanent a place they have in the Great Outdoors.

As we sat on the bench together for a little while, contemplating the wonders of nature, Tootsie surprised me with the depth of her thoughts and her philosophical observations about the natural world. Of all the Whimsies in Whimsieville, Tootsie is the youngest, and I often think she is like a little sister to the others, and that is in fact how they often treat her. And she doesn’t mind. But who would have ever thought that Little Sister had such a big mind, and such a big heart when it comes to all things Natural and Beautiful?3portrait

Tootsie and I hung out in the Park till the sun was fully up, and the Summer day began to feel a bit too hot for comfort. Well, it was too hot for me, but not for Tootsie, who is in such excellent shape from so much training in the bushes back at Whimsieville. But it was, after all, Saturday, always a very busy day in Whimsieville, and with so many more things to do this day, soon it was time to go. As we packed up, Tootsie was disappointed, yet at the same time incredibly happy to have finally had her opportunity to climb the trees, maneuver the tall steps, and contemplate the stillness of the early morning river.

10homeAs we drove home in the car, I promised Tootsie that since the weather is now finally begins to cool off with the approach of Autumn, I would be sure to find a way to make time to take her out once again to her beloved Park, so she can climb her beloved trees. And what do you think that silly little Whimsie had to say to that? Well…not too much, actually. She was so tired out, and so contented, that all she could do for the moment was…smile.

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