Theodore Turtle

It rained here today. It also rained yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that. For days and days it has rained and rained. It is hot and humid and all of this is taking a toll on my brain. The stickier it gets outside, the less my mind feels like functioning towards anything but finding the next glass of ice water and/or popsicle. It is, in short, making me a scatterbrain.

At least I can take comfort in the fact that I am not (yet anyways) as far gone as the subject of today’s book, Theodore Turtle. Written by Ellen MacGregor (who also originated the totally awesome chapter book Miss Pickerell series which you MUST read if you have not already) and illustrated by Paul Galdone, it tells the tale of an unfortunate reptilian whose memory make a sieve look solid. This one is an old favorite at our house and The Princess finds it to be absolutely hysterical. I have to agree wit her, it is pretty dang funny indeed.

Theodore Turtle wans to go shopping but is afraid it might rain. Galoshes are in order, so off he trots to the attic to get his and put them on. He accidentally leaves one of the four behind and realizes he only has three to wear once downstairs and putting them on.

He very wisely parks the three galoshes downstairs and goes upstairs to retrieve the missing galosh. Note the newspaper under his arm.

Back with his “found” single overshoe, he cannot remember where he put the other three. No matter, he can always sit and read the paper. That is, if he can find the paper. I wonder where it might be. The bedroom?

Nope, not there, but the alarm clock does need winding. While winding it he realizes he left the paper in the attic while getting his lost galosh and off he goes to get the newspaper. Carrying the alarm clock. You know where this is going.

Now where could that plaguing clock be? Perhaps a cup of tea would refresh his memory. Of course, he remembers just as he is taking down the teapot and off he goes to the attic, teapot in hand, to “find” his alarm clock.

The kettle is at the boil but no teapot in evidence. Clearly it has been lost. Botheration! To make matters worse, the fire is going out. Woodchopping might clear his mind and jog his memory.

Aha! Theo remembers that the teapot is in the attic. Off he goes with the axe….

“Isn’t it wonderful that I remembered that!” said Theodore. “I really am very clever!”

He put down his axe and picked up his teapot.

“Now at last I can have my nice cup of tea,” he said, as he went back to the kitchen.

Not so fast there, bud. You never chopped the wood, remember? But to chop wood, you need an axe. And the axe is, where, exactly? Foiled again.

Maybe if he uses the hose to water the lawn for a bit he’ll remember.

Yep. Worked like a charm. To the attic, Theodore!

There! At last! The axe is found, the wood is chopped and Theodore can have his nice cup of tea once the fire heats up again. In the meantime he’ll just take a little nap….

This is what he wakes up to. Now where could that pesky hose be?

…he got up out of his rocking chair and stumbled on the hose lying on the kitchen floor. He tried to think where the rest of the hose was, but he just couldn’t remember. So he began to follow the hose, keeping his eyes on it all the way. It led him into the living room, out through the hall, up the stairs, and into the attic.

Whew! The hose is found, the fire is out. Now to head downstairs for a nice rest after all this excitement.

He sat down on the bottom step to rest. And there, in a neat little pile, in the corner of the hall, right at the foot of the stairs, Theodore saw three of his rubbers….

…”Ho!” he shouted. “I know exactly where my other rubber is. It’s right here on my left hind foot.”

I have to admit, here, that up until this point I had not noticed at all that this crazy turtle was running around with only one shoe on for the vast majority of the book.

Theodore put all of his rubbers on and went downtown.

“I am so clever,” Theodore said. ‘So very clever at remembering!”

And that, folks, is a picture book snapshot of my mind these last few days. If I had a tail I’d be chasing it. The Hubs tells me that tomorrow is supposed to be sunny and I truly hope that it is. Because one more day of this rainy humidity and you just might catch me dragging a hose up to the attic too.

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