Monday, September 08, 2008

The case of the missing rabbit

After spending most of Saturday on a family shopping trip, Oliver and I were relaxing in the den/playroom, watching one of his favourite DVDs, when he asked,

'Daddy, where's Bunny Wunny?'

This is a pastel-coloured Beanie Baby rabbit that he acquired quite a long time ago but has only recently begun taking to bed and carrying around outside the home.

My mind immediately raced back over the past hour or so. I didn't remember bringing BW inside from the car (although I did carry in two umbrellas, a jacket, two caps and a large cardboard box when we came home). I checked the car, the table by the back door, the dresser in the front hall. No Bunny Wunny.

Then I remembered that Oliver had needed to use the bathroom while we were at the supermarket just before coming home and that I had placed the rabbit on top of the towel dispenser.

Not wanting to alarm Oliver, I told Mimi what I suspected. She got my glasses, I took her car keys and I drove back to the store.

The single-occupancy men's washroom was locked and I waited outside for what seemed like an eternity while sounds from the other side of the door suggested that the occupant might be leaving very soon ... or maybe not for a while.

A clanking belt buckle.

The sound of the towel dispenser. Maybe the toilet-paper dispenser.

More belt buckle.

Then, a ringing cellphone, followed by muffled sounds of a man talking, perhaps giving a moment-by-moment account of his ablutions to an interested caller.

The towel dispenser again.

Finally, a man emerged.

'Flush doesn't work,' he said as I looked around the small room, inside and behind the trash can.

No toy rabbits at the service desk either.

I returned home, feeling slightly sick that I would eventually have to tell Oliver of the loss and that I had failed him.

Bunny Wunny was on the bench in the front hallway.