Five Card Story: Honeybear Returns

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a Five Card Flickr story by Alba created Dec 31 2009, 03:09:16 pm. Create a new one!

flickr photo credits: (1) Serenae (2) Serenae (3) Serenae (4) Serenae (5) Serenae

about this story

One day Honeybear just disappeared. We looked everywhere. My son had been given the bear on his first birthday by his grandfather, and it had gone missing several times over the next fourteen years, but Honeybear, the color of honey - my son explained - always returned. Once he was mailed back from a motel chain in New Hampshire with a kind note from the head of housekeeping exclaiming what wonderful company Honey bear had been. Together, my son and Honeybear, had kept the bad guys away at night - fearlessly - night after night. But now, Honeybear was really gone. Had the girlfriend who had recently visited whisked him away in her suitcase, trying to hold on to a piece of my son? His heart? Was Honeybear suffocating under the debris and detritus of a teenage boy's room? Had he simply been misplaced or left behind again as many other belongings had been? Had my son failed to notice his disappearance as he approached sixteen? Was Honeybear now homeless? Perhaps alone in the starlight on a cold bench in Central Park? Hovering over a fire set in an old oil drum, keeping someone's unmittened hands warmer in the bitter cold? The possibilities and images sprouted in summer and swirled like snowflakes in winter.

That was then. Now, five years later, hints of Honeybear surprisingly keep appearing. Subtle hints. A string of lights, in the form of bears, appeared in the box of Christmas lights this year, somehow overlooked in the past. Tiny sparkling lights of royal blue, Honeybear's favorite color, appeared across the river, winking in the distance. And then, finally, a small, thin package appeared on our doorstep addressed to my son. It was wrapped in paper that was covered entirely with stuffed bears - in all different shapes, shades, and sizes. I had forgotten I had come across that same paper years ago.

Inside the gift-wrapped parcel was a book, a book of photographs, images of my son and Honeybear in earlier, better days together. There they were on Halloween dressed as a knight in shining armor with bear, a jukebox and bear, a fireman holding a cardboard paper towel holder hose with blue tissue paper water after rescuing a bear. There they were on their first day of school. There was Honeybear sitting on my son's bed with a sign welcoming him home from camp. There was Honeybear begging not to go outside to build a fort or an igloo on a snow day. All these memories and more opened up page by page, and yet, the question remained -where was Honeybear, and how did this mysterious parcel magically appear?

I know I don't know. And I know my son doesn't know, nor his sister. But Honeybear is clearly still here, amidst magic and memories, and fearless persistence.

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flickr photo credits: (1) Serenae (2) Serenae (3) Serenae (4) Serenae (5) Serenae

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