Pony, a love story
Pony came into our lives at the Omaha German Club's annual Germanfest earlier this summer. They had a small carnival set up for children, and dear little Bug decided to try her hand at mini golf. The poor child had no chance. She stood holding her club in front of her, trying to jab at the ball and continually missing. A kindly gentleman came over and said,
Here. Let me help you.
And he bent over, showed her how to hold it, and held her hands as he gently swung the club. A hole-in-one. And again. And again. Three in a row, and little Bug was ecstatic.

The young man monitoring the booth smiled, congratulated her and started to hand her a tootsie roll, but the kindly gentleman objected.
No, no, no! She got three in a row. That gets her the grand prize.
So that young man somewhat reluctantly led her over to the prize table where she first set eyes on a purple unicorn. It was love at first sight. In fact, the times that little unicorn would be out of her sight would be few over the next several months.

No longer purple, it picked up the stains of multiple meals, rolling in the backyard, and other hazards faced by stuffed animals kept always under the arm of an active three year old. Awake or asleep, Pony was always nearby, except during bath time, the one time Bug would set her aside. But only for a little bit.

Until our last visit to Grandma's. No one knows quite what happened, or where Pony was last seen. But about Rockport (halfway home), Bug realized she had forgotten Pony, burst into tears and cried herself to sleep. Had we been in Platte City, I might have turned around. For her, it was almost as if we had left little L.E.Fant behind. But I couldn't quite justify the two hours back to my parents over Pony.

So I called them, asked if they would mail her and offered to pay for the shipping.

Imagine our distress when Pony never showed up. Little Bug still talks about Pony...still insists that Grandpa is going to find her and mail her so she can come home. But no one can find little Pony, and no other stuffed animal will do. Although she has always played with her stuffed dolls, none ever attracted quite the level of loyalty that little Pony did.

And perhaps none other will.

Update: Pony was found! Much to the delight of my little Bug who has scarcely let her out of her sight since.