20 August 2016

Panda

Panda has a floppy neck. Somewhere along the line, he must have lost some of his stuffing but I can't remember when.

I first met Panda in the autumn of 1953. He joined me in my cot when I was a helpless baby, before I could even walk or talk let alone blog. When I slept my fitful baby slumbers, Panda just sat there watching over me, leaning against the cot's wooden spindles. Back then, the white parts of his coat were more obviously white. Now they are almost grey. I guess Panda is growing old - just like me, for of course we are the same age.

Throughout the past twenty seven years, Panda has been sitting within inches of my pillow on a shelf next to our bed. He gathers dust and, to be brutally honest, I hardly ever notice him. He is just there as he has always been, gazing into the void with his glassy eyes.
He is reliable and constant. Family members have passed away and friends have come and gone.  Our two children have flown the nest. More than two hundred and fifty seasons have fluttered by. But Panda is still here, silent, never uttering a word or passing judgement. As loyal as the most faithful dog.

And if I ever die, I want Panda next to me in the coffin. Should that unthinkable day arrive,  I will have become just like Panda - silent. peaceful and motionless without a thought in my head. Reaching that exalted state - it is a lesson that it will have taken an entire lifetime for Panda to teach and for me to learn.

27 comments:

  1. Lovely post YP - he is probably a very wise Panda if only he could talk.

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    1. Panda has seen and heard a lot but he always keeps his own counsel.

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  2. Such a lovely post and an interesting reflection.I am impressed that you have hung on to him for all these years. :)

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    1. Thank you Jenny. Did you have a childhood bear?

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  3. I love Panda. I always wanted a stuffed panda...and every year when I was a little girl I went along to the Gympie Show/fair (agricultural show, with produce and crafts' pavilion etc.,) and, of course, side show alley. I always tried to win the giant panda at one of the stalls, but I never did. I've often wondered if anyone actually ever did. Perhaps the same panda still goes around the show circuits to this day.

    A few years back I wrote a post about my efforts to win a panda - and of my love for them...both real and stuffed.

    Give Panda a hug from me. :)

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    1. Yes...that panda is probably still travelling around or stored in a dark stockroom, with little tears in her glassy eyes, wishing that the small girl from Gympie had won her all those years ago. How different her life would have been.

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  4. What a sweet post. I had a little teddy bear as a girl named Brownie. My mom bought him out of a discount bin in the department store where she worked at the time. He was missing a nose so she sewed on a tiny black pom pom thing to make him one. I haven't thought of Brownie in years and I have no idea what became of him.

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    1. Contact the FBI Jennifer. They should be able to track Brownie down and get you reunited. With Brownie back in your life your current job would not seem so stressful.

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  5. I replaced my tatty old teddy with a giant Wendy Boston designer bear that cost me 10 guineas from a Guildford toy shop. I still feel the guilt.

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    1. Poor Tatty! Where is she now? At best in a charity shop. At worst?... Lord I don't want to think about that Sue. Guildford should be renamed Guiltford.

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  6. My Mum made a cushion-like doll for me when I was very little. I never went to bed without her, and fell asleep most nights moments after my head came to rest on her belly. Sometimes she needed to be put in the wash, and I had to wait patiently until she was dry enough to be allowed into my bed again.
    I outgrew her but can still vividly picture her. Eventually, the fabric on her belly was worn so thin it had to be patched. She does not exist anymore, but I have fond memories.
    Panda having been such a loyal companion all your life and getting grey now as you both are no youngsters anymore - rather touching, really.

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    1. Did your cushion-like doll have a name? I am thinking Cushy but I shuddered when I read this sentence - "She does not exist any more." Poor Cushy!

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    2. Her name was Schlumbl, sounds a bit like slumber. I created that name when I was little, it is not an actual German name or word.

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  7. I, too, had a Panda, which features in many photos of me as a small child, so I was obviously very attached to it. It was passed on to a cousin when I was deemed too old for such childish things. I still have a great fascination for Pandas.

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    1. How sad that you had to give up your panda bear. This must have scarred you psychologically CG. Did you ever receive counselling? You poor thing.

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  8. My 30 year old son still has Teddy, that he got for his first Christmas. Teddy isn't as well made as Panda, but he's still hanging in there, one of his few possessions my son can always find.

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    1. I hope that Anna isn't jealous of Teddy!

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  9. I was the oldest of many children so any bear or other toy I had did not stay mine for long before it had to be passed down to the younger ones. I surprised myself about 20 years ago when I developed an attachment for a bear I'd bought for my grandson to play with when he visited. All my grandkids have loved my Love Heart Bear.

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    1. I was one of four brothers and we all had our bears. You didn't mess with your bother's bear in Yorkshire.

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  10. That's quite a record for keeping a teddy bear. You can also look at it now and see life lessons.

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    1. I have been whispering in Panda's ear. "There's no such thing as eaves troughs!"

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    2. ...and he's responding!!!

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  11. What an endearing post that is. I often wonder what happened to my Teddy whose hair I cut as a wee tot in the expectation that it would grow again - just like mine did.

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    1. It sounds like your dear Teddy is, like many others, in Teddyheaven - The Great Toy Box in the sky.

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  12. It's impressive that Panda has survived all this time. I had a teddy bear as a child, but mine is long gone. I do have a stuffed dog that belonged to my father, though.

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    1. I should add that my teddy bear was HIDEOUS. I think it was pink and yellow, if I remember correctly.

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    2. Pink and yellow? Mmmm... Whatever happened to little Hideous? A teddy bear cannot help the way he looks. I hope you didn't rip Hideous's head off or toss him out of a car window.

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