Brummel feels stupid
When Uncle goes to work in the morning, Brummel has to enjoy himself for the rest of the day. Sometimes the loneliness becomes a bit too much for him and he gets homesick. He thinks about his daddy and his girlfriend Mieke. She lives in the treehouse, that stands in the middle of their garden. Will Mieke miss him as much as he misses her, Brummel wonders. As soon as Dad comes to stay for a few days, he will ask him if they can visit Mieke. Oh, how he misses her. It even hurts a little in his stomach.
“Come on Brummel. Don’t whine like that. You have a new girlfriend now,” he whispers to himself. “You know what, I’m going to Elsie, but I don’t know where she lives. Maybe it is better that I stay here.”
Bored he sits on the sidewalk in front of the door and puts some pebbles at his feet. He starts counting. After all, he promised Elsie that he would keep practicing, but he doesn’t get past the 8. He tries again and again. Unfortunately, every time he gets stuck at eight.
“Yes, I remember. After the 8 comes 10 and then 9,” he shouts happily.
“How proud Elsie will be of me.” Again, he starts counting. “1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 9, no, it’s not right. I miss something,” he whispers.
In the distance he sees Elsie coming. When she sees Brummel, she runs up to him and goes sitting next to him on the sidewalk.
“Elsie, do you think I’m very stupid when I don’t remember which number becomes after 8. Is it the 10 or the 9?”
He bends his head deep and hardly dares to look at her. Elsie takes Brummel on her lap and smiles at him.
“You think I’m really stupid, don’t you?” asks Brummel. He jumps off her lap and wants to hide.
Elsie runs after him and before he can hide, she catches him just in time. “Don’t be silly. Of course, I don’t think you’re stupid. You are doing just well. You have to keep practicing. It takes time. In the beginning, I also forgot sometimes which number came first. You have to keep practicing and suddenly you know and then you never forget it. Shall we try again?”
Brummel nods and starts counting 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. Then he stops and looks at Elsie questioningly. But Elsie says nothing and thinks he should try it for himself first.
Brummel thinks very deeply and then calls out happily. ‘I know. It is 9 then 10,” and he claps his hands proudly.
“Well done Brummel, I am proud of you. See you know.”
Brummel chuckles and says: “I first wanted to say ten, but then I turned it around. So it is, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.”
“That’s very good,” Elsie says and gives him a big kiss on the nose.
“When will you teach me how to count further than 10?”
“After the 10 comes 11, Elsie replies. “You know, I think it would be much better that you keep practicing before I teach you the next numbers.”
Brummel is disappointed and walks into the garden and keeps counting to ten.
Elsie dreamily follows him with her eyes. She is happy to be with Brummel.
Softly she whispers: “It remains strange, a bear that comes to life. It looks like a fairytale. Who has such a sweet bear? Sometimes It just like a dream, but I am sure it is for real.”
For a moment she squeezes in her arm to convince herself that it is not a dream. “Oh, that hurts!”
“What hurts,” Uncle asks, who is suddenly standing in the doorway.
Elsie is scaring from his deep voice.
“Don’t be scare, Elsie. It’s just me. Where is Brummel?”
She tells him that he is in the garden and just when Uncle want to call him, he comes over and proudly he stands in front of his uncle and counts to 10.
Uncle’s mouth falls open in surprise.
“Isn’t that great,” Brummel exclaims happily. “And you know uncle. I also already know that after the 10 comes 11. I learned all that from Elsie.”
Uncle nods and smiles at Elsie. “You know Brum, I’m proud of you. How many legs do you have?”
Brummel becomes quiet and looks at his legs, thinks deeply and says: “Two!”
The End of Part 8