Sunday, 25 March 2007

Koalas do not ride on cars

I have a confession to make. When we were driving through Koala Land in Australia (we are still grateful, Aunty Dee, for posting the driving licences), we saw a lot of koalas up in the trees. I joked to Shark, Squirrel and Tiger that koalas were so lazy they sometimes dropped out of the trees onto passing cars below and, in this way, hitched a free ride. When the car passed under a low-lying eucalyptus branch, the lazy koala grabbed the branch and lifted themselves off the car. So the koala we're seeing down the road is probably the same koala we saw up the road, and this is why they're called drop bears.

Dig pulled into a layby and I got out the passenger side and, before opening the children's door, very quickly drew some smudged circles in the dusty car rooftop with my finger. As the children climbed out I shouted 'Look! Five lazy Koalas have hitched a ride on the car!' Now at this point I expected Squirrel to laugh, Shark to give me a kick, and for Tiger to shout 'Mummy rubbish!' which is what they do when they suspect me of spinning a yarn. But they didn't. They believed me. And they believed me so completely and with such delight that I couldn't then say 'Actually I'm lying my back teeth out.'

So we have come home with this belief, that five koalas hitched a ride on the car. And whenever, like today, that some poor unfortunate engages them in conversation about what did they see when they were in Australia, out comes the story that five koalas hitched a ride on our car. And I can't say over their little excited voices, 'That's rubbish! Of course I made it up!' So I say nothing. The listener looks confused, looks at them, looks at me inanely grinning, and wonders if we're all mad.

Enough is enough. I'm confessing. I made it up. Shark, Tiger and Squirrel, one day when you read this, you'll discover your mother is a fraud, a fake, a liar and a fantasist.

Anyway, I meant to say three koalas. Five could never fit on a car roof.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

The kangaroos make dents in the car roof so you were better off with the koalas.