Friday, 3 July 2009

An excellent bear adventure

Some weeks ago our pal Jeff told us that he was going to a Bear Festival in the middle of the New Forest. We thought that was a very exciting thing to do and started to wonder how we would get there. Only – we weren’t really sure where the New Forest was.

So we asked our human. She said it was hundreds of miles away on the other side of the country and much too far for us all to go, especially since we would have to take two or three trains and at least one bus to get there. Then, of course, we would have to come back again.

We were a bit disappointed, but we put our disappointment on our Twitter page and went off to do other exciting things. Like drink tea. And sleep.

Unbeknownst to us, Frannie the human’s mother was idly trawling through Twitter to while away the time on a long car journey. She noticed that we wanted to go to the Bear Festival. Aha, she thought. We could take the Hippos, and their human. We could collect The Builder’s mother too. She would like to go to a bear festival. She told The Builder about it. He thought it was a good idea too.

And so it was that last Sunday saw us all in Beaulieu in the New Forest, visiting lots of bears.

There were antique bears and artist’s bears. There were children’s bears and humans dressed as bears. There were all sorts of fun things to do. Bernard and I had our first ever portrait taken in a professional photographer’s studio. AND – we had our portrait drawn too, by a real artist. There were things to eat and things to drink. There were games to play and competitions to enter. We helped our human’s mother free a teddy princess from the clutches of an evil dragon.

The Festival took over the whole village. The sun shone. It was a lovely day. We found our friend Jeff in the school ground. He had his friend XXXXX and both their humans with him. We ran across them again later on the playing fields. We were very happy that Frannie and The Builder had been able to take us down.

Then we took Grandmother Gwen back to her house and we all drove to Cambridge, to our friend Frank the Lion’s house. His human is the sister of ours, and their cousin and his friend were staying for two night. The cousin lives in Australia usually so everyone was very pleased to see him. His friend is a very nice lady. We all sat outside in the sunshine and had pizza for a late dinner.

In Christian-the-cousin’s honour everyone had taken Monday off (not that we needed to, Bernard being a *retired* business hippo, and me being a professional sleeper). It was a lovely, sunny, summery day so we went to the market, and had iced drinks, and walked along the river and had lunch in a pub with a terrace down to the river.

Then we and our human had to go home. Frannie and The Builder wanted to get back because they had things to do. We would have quite liked to go punting with the others. But I suppose we can go to Cambridge almost any time and go punting. Frannie says she’ll come too – but only if someone else punts and she gets to sit elegantly about in a straw hat and floatie skirt. The Builder didn’t seem keen. We don’t think he likes water very much. This seems an odd attitude to two hippos!

We are sorry this has taken so long to write up. But it was such an exciting weekend that I have only just woken up from my after-weekend nap. Even Bernard has been sleepy this week. Frannie says she’ll sort our photos our this weekend. But not tonight. Tonight she is going to make ravioli and cheesecake. We think she should make ravioli and cheesecake for us too!

Here are the photos