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May 3, 2014

As Time Goes By: The tale of Harvey, the Easter gift rabbit

(Continued)

Harvey was a hoot! The only thing I didn’t understand was how his nest got so wet in just one week. I gave him water and lettuce and carrot ends along with rabbit “kibbles.” You would think that Harvey hadn’t been fed in a year — Harvey sucked up kibble and lettuce plus gallons of water and grew very fast. He was very plump, and with all the brushings he got, was as soft as a feather. 

Girls made a fuss over him, while boys made believe that they were hunting by aiming a pistol-finger and going “Blam!” They would blow on the end of their pistol finger and smile contentedly.

I was shocked. Hurt my “Harvey”? No way! I made it known that Harvey died only over my dead body.

That fall, cold weather came early and hearts melted with the thought of Harvey in his hutch, shivering. The same people who decided to get me a real bunny decided that Harvey could come inside. 

Harvey mistook this for a stage revue and performed by doing flips (backwards) and snuggling into laps of my spinster aunt. He was a knockout at show-and-tell in school. I must confess I started getting jealous. I wondered what rabbit stew would taste like. It ranged from pure delicious, like hot dogs, to the bitter taste you get from biting into a green hairless caterpillar. (I only did that once on a dare.)

Harvey sealed his own fate. Running loose, Harvey decided that the Berber carpet needed trimming. He ate huge sections of the Berber without a burp.

Then Harvey started to get lost in the house. “Where’s Harvey?” my sister would ask. In my best “I am not my rabbit’s keeper’s voice,” I would say “How should I know?” A room-by-room search would be initiated and Harvey would be found in a nest made out of clean, dry clothes surrounded by little nuggets.

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