Ninja Turtle?


The Parable of the Turtle

Today we had a visitor. I looked out the front window and there was a turtle strolling across our front yard.

I’ve seen them crossing the road before but this was the first one brave enough to just casually walk through the yard. He (she?) was a handsome specimen, dark and orange with yellow piping on his neck. I’ve seen dusty-looking “gopher turtles” that burrow in your yard, but he didn’t look like one. He was a no-nonsense in-your-face “I’m a turtle, what are you gonna do about it” critter.

To a starving carnivore I suppose he looked delicious. Fortunately for him we were not starving. I’d have to be really hungry to attack such a harmless living being.


He seemed to be heading down the street to a pond to our south. My brother James and I watched his progress with interest.

He was rather suspicious of our motives. He kept stretching out his neck to look back at us in case we were following him, which we were.

Eventually he reached our neighbor’s driveway.  Our neighbor, whose name is also Jim, noticed the little rascal and waited for him to get across the driveway before he backed his car out.

The nameless ninja turtle slid off into the shade of a palm tree and we stopped following him. Hopefully he made it to the pond, if that was where he was headed.

Let’s leave him be. He reminded me of myself: fully grown, single, stumbling through life. He seemed to know where he was going, however. And he was smarter than the other turtles I have seen here in Florida. He was staying on the shoulder and avoiding what little traffic we get here. He wasn’t worrying about jobs, taxes, or the debt crisis in Greece and Italy. He was sticking to what he knew, what he could do: being a turtle.

There must be a lesson to be learned here. I’ll think about it.


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