Snails

Snails

by Katherine Inskip

We were walking to school when we saw the army of snails. Mummy saw them first, and she called Nikki and me over to have a look. There were hundreds of them! All different sizes and colours, some massive and some itty-bitty-diddy ones, smaller than a baby’s fingernail. They were on this big bush in someone’s front garden. Mummy said they were eating the leaves, and if we looked close we might see them chewing, and we did! She even picked one up. Then she said, “That’s strange,” and then, “Come on, kids, we’re going to be late!” and she got grumpy with me when I asked if we could stop at the shop but I did ask nicely, honest! At school we had pizza and salad for lunch, and they let me have extra salad cream.

* * *

The snails were bigger today, but Mummy said we were running late for school and couldn’t stop to look at them. We practised number bonds and played I-spy and did the story of Mossy-Wossy the Super Cat, and then because we were actually early and Mummy said she must’ve got the time wrong, Mummy let us play on her phone!

* * *

It was raining today, so we walked the top way to school instead of going down the path through the woods, and we didn’t get to check on the snails. At After School Club, I did a picture of my favouritest one, the pink one with the funny slime. Ben and Imogen from the other year 1 class had seen them too, all over the ivy on the wall behind the school, but my drawing was best. Also, because it was raining we all got to play on the tablets after snack-time!

* * *

We went with Daddy in the car to school today. Mummy’s not feeling well. We had to go on all different roads than normal, because the one we usually walk down was closed.

* * *

We went to Nanny and Grandad’s house this weekend. Mummy’s in the hospital. She’ll be okay because I gave her Mossy-Wossy to look after her. And guess what? The snails are here, too! Daddy doesn’t like them, but WE do. We’re going to get one as a pet. It has to be a secret from Daddy though. I want one of the tiny pink ones, the ones that whisper when you pick them up, but Nikki says the spiky ones are better, because they make you feel fuzzy if you touch them. Nikki’s wrong. The fuzzy feeling’s kind of nice, I guess, but sometimes the spikes hurt a bit, too.

* * *

Today we saw the BIGGEST SNAIL EVER!!! But I couldn’t get close to it, because we had to keep the windows and doors closed.

* * *

The snails came into the house today. It wasn’t much fun when everyone was shouting, but I think it’s okay now. Everything’s quiet downstairs, even Barney the dog, but Daddy says we need to stay in Nanny’s bedroom. I don’t think I want a snail as a pet any more though. I wish Mummy and Mossy-Wossy were here instead, and I wish Daddy could fix the TV so the cartoons come back on instead of just the news.

We’ve played snakes and ladders six times now, and jigsaws are boooooring.

* * *

It’s dark downstairs, and I’m hungry. I wish I could be a snail. The snails say, if I wish hard enough, maybe I can.

Nikki and Daddy can’t, but I shouldn’t be sad about them, because they don’t love me the way the snails do.

I guess that’s okay?

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Katherine Inskip
Katherine Inskip teaches astrophysics for a living and spends her spare time populating the universe with worlds of her own. She is assistant editor for Cast of Wonders and is addicted to chocolate and Japanese logic puzzles. Website:https://trisigmatic.com

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