A friend has a donkey, two horses, two dogs, various chickens and used to have a parrot.
Before Christmas she suggested I write a short story about a drunken donkey, and although it’s nearer Easter here’s what I came up with.
I was quite happy playing in the fields with my two horse companions, and if it got cold I could go back to my nice warm stables. My human made sure I had plenty of feeding straw and hay for the winter although I loved grazing the grass, berries and shrubs when it was warm enough in the summer. Mrs only told me off a little bit when I accidentally ate all the plants she was trying to grow in her garden. She told Mr that if he hadn’t left the gate open I wouldn’t have wandered in there so he got most of the blame.
They always made sure I had plenty of clean water to drink as I was second only to the camel in my limited capacity to store it, and it quickly went in one end and out the other. Why else have a human unless it was to clear up after you, and bring the occasional salt or mineral lick when I couldn’t get out much during the bad weather.
Even when the two legged creatures drank something called alcohol over Christmas I was never interested. I preferred Easter when everyone remembered it was one of my relatives who carried a very important person, and lots of people came over to make a fuss of me and bring me treats. My favourite time was summer but all too soon it was over and the leaves started falling from the trees. Soon it would be time to spend long hours inside, and the thought of it made me irritable and a bit cantankerous.
Perhaps that was why I wandered away from my usual grazing area and discovered the hole in the fence. Although it was quite small I was stubborn, so with a bit of ingenuity I soon had it big enough to push myself through. I know sometimes we are considered dumb but we are actually quite clever; it’s just that we’re not very good at taking orders from inferior species.
Looking around I could see ancient apple and pear trees although the area looked quite neglected, and there were even fungi sprouting in the undergrowth. I loved apples but usually they were too high up on the tree for me to reach, but here there were plenty lying on the ground. Although some had been half eaten I didn’t mind sharing them with the bees and others insects. Yum. They were delicious and a lot sweeter than the occasional one I was given as a treat.
I munched away happily until suddenly my back legs went wobbly. Normally I was sure-footed so perhaps it was just some damp undergrowth that made me stagger a bit. I crunched some more apples then my front legs tottered and I began to feel woozy. My eyes started to go blurry and I thought it would be a good idea to sit down and rest for a bit. I must have slept for a while because the next thing I knew I had a pounding headache and my human was standing over me looking very worried.
‘So that’s where you got to Bella. We’ve been looking for you all over. Come on; let’s get you back to your stable so you can sleep off your hangover. Don’t you know fermented fruit is just like drinking alcohol? Perhaps you’ll learn to keep out of there next time.’
For once I didn’t argue as she led me back to my stables and gave me a good, long refreshing drink. I think I’ll stick to water in future.
© Voinks January 2017