Dazel decision - Part 1

Let's find out what Din Din, Delma and Dazel are up to this week.
Published June 15, 2024

Dazel was confused. And it wasn’t a feeling she liked very much. The pond was becoming more crowded than ever and Dazel did not know how to deal with it. Their small pond community had started off with frogs and their families and insects like dragonflies and mayflies who flitted around the area. The snapping turtles were a quiet lethargic lot but the shoal of crayfish had increased over the years. Swain, the black swan had been a good friend and neighbour but with the red ants making their ant hill, Dazel felt there wasn’t a moment of silence at the pond.

“I love the pond as my home,” Dazel confessed to her friends, Delma the dolphin and Din Din the dinosaur. “I don’t have any immediate family and these neighbours are my family. But sometimes I want some peace and quiet.”

Delma was silent as she listened to her friend. “I have lived alone and it’s very distressing. That’s why I began to have nightmares. I’m so much happier now that I’m living next to Olly and his family. It’s important to be around people who care about you.

Din Din looked at Dazel in compassion, “I know what you mean. I live in a huge family — we are four brothers, my parents and grandparents. It’s always crowded and there is no privacy. That’s why I like to escape to my garden during the day. Gardening is very therapeutic for me.”

Dazel shook her head, “I understand the importance of community and I’m a very social creature. But at the end of the day I wish to relax and be by myself. I love Grandfather Frog and Ribbit and Swain but I have realized that I need more space. I love collecting interesting objects but now there is no place to store my stuff. When I want to paint or write I have so much disturbance around me.” She looked at her friends, “Does that make me a terrible creature?”

“No, no,” said in Din Din. “Not at all. You need to be happy to make others happy.”

“What are you considering?” inquired Delma.

“Will you both help me find a new place to stay?” asked Dazel. “I just want to look around.”

“Sure,” nodded Din Din.

“I can help you look for a place to stay near the bank of the lake,” added Delma.

“Thank you so much, both of you,” said Dazel in relief. “I was feeling so guilty about my thoughts. I thought you guys would feel I’m being thankless.”

“Everyone has their own needs, Dazel,” said Delma. “That doesn’t make them selfish. It just makes everyone unique.”

So the next morning Dazel paid a visit to her mentor and teacher, Wiz Rooster. She liked to consult him before every important decision. After the wise rooster had listened to Dazel, he smiled sagaciously. “I can recommend a spot for your new home,” he said finally. “It’s near the Aviary School and it’ll give you privacy too.”

“Really!” said Dazel excitedly. “Where?”

“Well, here right in my backyard,” replied Wiz Rooster.

“But you don’t have a pond or a water hole?” asked Dazel in puzzlement. “Actually, I have been thinking about digging a pond here, but I’ve always shunned the thought because I did not have time to care for it. But if you’re considering moving out from the pond and settling down somewhere quieter, then I have an offer for you. You could take care of the artificial pond and live here,” offered the rooster.

“Oh my! I don’t know what to say. I’m overwhelmed! Thank you so much,” blabbered a stunned Dazel.

“Well, we will need to get started on digging that pond first and it will take a few weeks. I have a team of moles, rabbits and beavers in mind who would be great for the job,” said Wiz. “I’ll get in touch with them and you better start informing your neighbours of your plan.” That thought dampened Dazel’s excitement.

“How will I ever break the news to Ribbit and Swain and Grandfather Frog?” she asked Delma and Din Din when she shared the news with them that evening.

“It’s something you will have to do as soon as possible. It’s better if you tell them rather than they having to hear it from someone else,” advised Delma.

So that evening after the sun had set and the pond was still alive with the noises of its inhabitants, Dazel requested for a community meeting.

“So what’s the agenda?” asked Ribbit after all the pond creatures had gathered at the pond bank. Dazel served them all sweet raspberries she had picked from Din Din’s garden especially for this occasion. It was a custom at the pond that whoever called meeting was responsible for the snacks.

“I have something to share with all of you,” said Dazel taking a deep breath. “It’s a decision I have taken with a lot of difficulty and I hope you will all give me your blessings.” Everyone gazed at Dazel in anticipating silence.

“I want to move from the pond!” Dazel said softly. Even though the words were a whisper but everyone heard them. There was an audible gasp as the stars twinkled in the night sky and the fireflies fluttered and flickered.

“But…but why?” asked Ribbit finally. “Please, don’t take offence. I love all of you. But I just want to move somewhere quieter,” Dazel explained as her heart sank. She hated seeing the shell-shocked expressions of her neighbours. She also detested the fact that she was the cause of this pain.

“We can try to be quieter,” suggested Swain solemnly.

“No, no! It’s nobody’s fault. The problem is not with any of you but it’s just that I feel I would be more comfortable if I were on my own,” Dazel tried to explain desperately.

“I, for one, support Dazel,” said a quivery voice. Everyone looked at the speaker in surprise. It was Grandfather Frog. “I think everyone has a right to make a choice for him or herself. It takes a lot of courage to take a decision like this and I appreciate your bravery in facing all of us.” Dazel looked at Grandfather Frog in relief and ran up to hug him. The old frog laughed. “Moving away from here does not mean our bond of love will break,” said the elderly frog affectionately.

The tension around the pond seemed to lessen. “Where are you moving, Dazel?” asked Ribbit.

“You have to visit often,” begged a dragonfly.

“At least we will meet in school every day,” declared Swain.

“Yes, yes, of course. I will miss you all so much. You all have each other but I will be on my own,” Dazel said. And as she said those words she realized the enormity of her decision.

“Best of luck, Dazel, my dear,” whispered Grandfather Frog. “This is a sign that you are growing up.”

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