I’d named her after a girl I’d met at sleepaway camp, who’d had a long mullet, was kind of a bully, and was probably one of my first girl crushes.
Missy the Tortoise was just one of countless tortoise my Mum would bring home to live with us during the twenty-some-odd years she worked first the Los Angeles Zoo.
I guess people who’d keep these bizarre animals as pets weren’t very careful or watchful, allowing for their frequent escape… and, for whatever reason, once found, these guys got turned in to the zoo, rather than the pound. From there, they usually ended up back at my place.
Although it was always my Mum who’d play nurse to the tortoises when they were sick and dote over their eggs when nesting, and eventually the babies when hatched, I was always their favorite human.
I know this because their favorite food is rose pedals. Especially the ones that grow on my Mum’s prized rose bushes. Oh the sacrifices that must be made for the animals we love. The risks aren’t quite as high these days, now that my Mum isn’t around anymore.
Missy is our last tortoise. For a while there, we had so many at once (Missy, Tank, Flower, FooFee… ). That’s a lot for a half acre yard. Especially when they fight. They’re fast!
I hope Missy lives forever.
#missy #tortoise #landtortoise
#deserttortoise #reptile #home #nostalgia #mum #lazoo #memories (at Mum & Dad’s House, West Hills, California)