The Interview – part 2
Hello again Mr Ted. Have you had a good rest?
Actually, I have been quite busy – helping my Human, Mel, make pancakes, celebrate mums and carers, and support Comic Relief! But I’ve had plenty of rest too. It seems like a long time since I started all my adventures, but every single one has been amazing, for a lot of important reasons, including meeting so many lovely Humans (some I’ve met on almost every single adventure!) Most importantly though, I’ve been able to help my Human’s poorly head – seeing lots of big smiles and happy faces on both little and big Humans has done heaps of good for her. She met and talked to many of them (all while obeying the rules of course – by not getting too close to each other). Who would have thought that, at a time when all were asked to stop meeting, mine and so many others would make wonderful new friends?! I am so, so happy to have been able to help during such difficult times, to see lots of Humans get so much enjoyment from my adventures. Every morning, as soon as Mel appeared, a phrase my friend Pooh once said to me popped into my head, “As soon as I saw you, I knew an adventure was going to happen!”
Do you have a favourite adventure?
I have tons! But adventures need careful planning. I would supervise while my Human and her Human, Andy, thought up and prepared my adventures. Some adventures were special requests from others. I needed to have a new outfit for every escapade as bears, because we’re completely covered in furry hair, can get quite grubby very quickly. Plus, it would have looked silly if I’d gone swimming in, say, cowboy boots and a Stetson! And each adventure needed a special scene. My clothes and other items came from a fancy-dress box, from many of my new friends, and from my Andy (we had to cut up most of them as he is bigger than me. But he’s a good egg 12). Oh, and also from a place called Poundland, which sounds amazing – I think I’d like to have an adventure there some day! My Human’s grandson let me have many of his toys too and I always gave them back after each adventure. I must say, getting ready for each day we made quite a mess – bits of clothing, materials and scenery everywhere – but that’s OK, Mel was up very early every morning to set me off on my adventure, before all the little Humans went to school so they could see what I was getting up to! Anyway, some favourite adventures were on VE Day, on Captain Tom’s 100th Birthday and on May Day. And an extra special adventure was my trip to Jurassic Park because my Human’s grandson, Ezra, who she hadn’t seen for a long time, came with me – he absolutely loves dinosaurs. As do I!
A new adventure every day for 125 days. Didn’t you get tired at all?
Well of course I did. As did my Humans. But, as I have said before, it was important to help as many as I could. Even if we had put a smile on the face of only one other, it was all worth it. The fact that we made so many lives a little brighter is more than I could have hoped for. But we did get very tired, and it was hard (but fun) work. And because we had kept going for so long, my Human was quite reluctant to take a break. When everyone was told that things were starting to improve, we decided to slow down, on the 31st of July. So, I had a sleep. I must have been tired because I went into hibernation (so I’m told!) Because the situation across the world was improving only slowly; with more ups and downs to come, and because lots of Humans said they were missing me and my adventures, we decided we should do some more adventures on special occasions – I’m still doing these now!
Is there anything else you would like to say Mr Ted, before we close?
I certainly would. I know that the effects of this horrible disease have touched everyone in some way, and I want to tell you what Mel has told me. Her Human, Andy, caught the disease while driving his bus. He was quite poorly for a while but is a lot better now. Unfortunately, some other bus drivers, friends and colleagues of Andy, also caught the disease but some of them did not recover. Mel and Andy lost a family friend to the disease too. It is so sad that they, and many, many others, have lost colleagues, friends and family at this time. Mel said that helping me with my adventures gave her a reason to get up each morning and she is so glad to have made so many friends, both little and big. It has been so amazing, by helping others and giving them something to look forward to, to see her start a road to recovery and to help her feel she, like everyone, is valued and loved by so many others. She knows it is a very strange and difficult time for everyone but, if we keep looking out for and after each other, we will get through. As Pooh’s friend Eeyore said, “A little consideration, a little thought for others, makes all the difference”. Mel, and I, are thankful that Andy suggested we have a new adventure each day.
Mr Ted and his adventures have touched hearts worldwide. Comments are too numerous to mention them all, here are just a few:
Mary, who, for her homework, was asked to write about a community hero. She chose Mr Ted.
Helen Davidson, who said Mr Ted was, every day, a beacon of light in a dark tunnel, helping to make the lockdown days bear-able!
Charley, his favourite adventure was Mr Ted as a racing driver! Charley visited every day he could.
Amber Support Services, who thoroughly enjoyed receiving news of Mr Ted’s adventures, which kept their spirits up during lockdown.
Nishkam School Trust, whose students waited eagerly each day for Mr Ted’s next adventure, wrote letters to him, and received replies!
Julie Barnardos, Mr Ted kept her family smiling and laughing, brightening each day during lockdown and giving them lots to talk about.
Judy & Harry in Brook St, the adventures made sure they both got exercise each and every day. And they told their friends in Australia about Mr Ted!
Anthony Stephens, who said that, through arguably the most challenging and frightening year in living memory, Mr Ted and his family gave our little corner of Stourbridge something big to smile about.
Mr Ted, his friends and his family say thank you, for all your kind words.