Hello again, fellow Baffled Ones. The adventure began when Gavin showed Lionel The Lion pictures of Oz-Stral-Ya. Inspired by the pictures of Tasmanian Tigers, Lionel decided he had to search for his long lost fore-lions (In Part 2) . He and Gavin hitched a ride north from Perth, getting as far as Geraldton, Western Australia, on the first day (in Part 3 . Onward they journeyed to the Shark Bay heritage region (in Part 4 ) where they saw wild emus, and then further north still to finally arrive at Coral Bay (Part 5.).
Our heroes woke to a glorious day. The Bay looked tranquil, the sky serene. They asked directions of a couple of locals. The Ta Ta lizard and the friendly bird knew of bustards and eagles and ‘Roos and wallabies hereabouts but they had never seen a lion of any kind.
They planned their search. Because they didn’t want to get their stuffing wet, they decided against going into the blue coloured areas on the maps. The reddish open country behind the township looked promising to Lionel. But Gavin had his heart set on eating a macadamia ice cream on the beach. “The beach”, he declared. “That’s the place to search.”
“Would my fore-lions be on a beach, though?” asked Lionel. Although Gavin didn’t think so he improvised quickly. “Possibly not. But we just might see a Fore-Sea-Lion”.
“Oh yes, let’s go down to the beach”, said a won-over Lionel.
Gavin made a great show of looking everywhere. He looked at the beach. There was a lot of beach to look at. He looked at the sea. It was several beautiful shades of blue. He sighed and ate his icecream. This was the life. He was so glad he had come along to look after Lionel. Meanwhile, the intrepid lion hunkered down behind grasses so that he could leap out on a fore-lion if one happened to come along by and ask, “Are you my cousin, by any chance?”
But what they saw instead was a creature in the shallow water lapping the beach.
A skate ray. It was so close inshore that Lionel and Gavin could look at it while not getting their stuffing wet. It sort of slurped at the sand and shovelled a little way into it and slurped some more and then skimmed along in the crystal clear water.
Our travellers watched for ages, quite mesmerised. You just didn’t get to see this sort of thing back home.
Later in the day they hiked a long way up the beaches and sniffed about among the dunes. There were lots of traces of birds and even hints that turtles had been here. But nothing more.
They looked far out to sea as well. Out there lay the Ningaloo Reef and beyond that, a vast distance away, lay Madagascar and Africa. Fore-sea-lions might be out there even now. Or Madagascan penguins. Or whales. But it was the wrong month to see whales.
They were tired, hot, blown about by the wind and dusty. If you think they should have kept their sun hats on, you are quite right. But the wind kept blowing the hats off. They took a last look at the coast line disappearing away as far as you can see .. and returned to base camp where they rewarded themselves with ice cream. Another, in Gavin’s case.
They had seen no fore-lions at all. But they did now know where fore-lions were not. They had seen soaring birds, amazing skate rays and beautiful beaches. Next day, they will turn inland and continue their search. Don’t miss the next exciting episode of …. da da da daaah dummmm … Lionel The Lion Seeks His Fore-Lions.
Mawson Guardian Says: Gavin and Lionel live with Mawson Bear. Mawson writes little books full of muddles , bafflements, and even some accidental wisdom.
Where to find Mawson’s Books: Our publisher is OdysseyBooks where you can find fun and beautiful books with pictures for grownups.At Amazon everywhere, including at Amazon Australia (where Mawson Lives), Amazon UK and Amazon France, among others.