One afternoon earlier this month, I hung up the phone and announced happily to the kids, “Corbin is well again and ready to be released back into the wild!”
Corbin is a box turtle. We found him last summer in the middle of the road (literally—I picked him up off the center line) and took him to the local wildlife rescue center. Summer turned into fall, and the center didn’t call us to come get him. I figured he’d gone into hibernation. They said he might go into hibernation. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have thought that because I actually didn’t know turtles hibernated.
The week before we were to leave for our big trip, they called: “You can come pick up your turtle.”
We dropped everything to go get him. They gave him to us in a closed box and said his shell had healed up so well that you couldn’t tell anything was ever wrong with him.
We returned to Corbin Road where we found him. The kids said goodbye.
I released him near a spreading oak tree and a meadow.
I can’t say he thanked us. His attitude was much more along the lines of, “Unhand me, you foul fiend! I will escape!” He disappeared into the underbrush without so much as a backwards glance.
It was a gratifying end to a short little chapter in our lives.