From the window of the Mountain Resort Hotel we are vacationing in, we watch a marmot basking below us on a rock. He sprawls out in the warmth of the sun gazing up at the blue summer sky. A fleecy puff of cloud watches him for a while until it gets bored and then floats off for a vista with a little more action.
George, as my granddaughter names him, continues to stare heavenward and I wonder what the typical marmot daydreams about. My grandchildren thrust open the window and George pushes his fat body up on squatty legs to look at them. Someone throws him a handful of grapes and he scampers off his rock and shoves them into his mouth. He looks up waiting for more and isn’t disappointed. A shower of crackers, nuts and bits of bread reign down upon him and he gathers up each morsel, stuffing them into his mouth.
That’s when I realize George isn’t a dreamer at all. He is a Rodent of Israel waiting for Manna from Heaven to fall. Why should he scurry about the mountainside rummaging for food when all he has to do is kick back and wait for stuff to land in his ample lap? George could use a little hustle in his routine judging by the size of his gut, but it’s so much easier to wait for an obviously reliable food source to fall from the sky. Besides, now that he’s used to a variety of loftier cuisine, bugs and berries don’t hold much attraction to him. The Children of Israel should have been so spoiled. It was like,
What’s for breakfast?
Then what’s for lunch?
And for dinner?
Again? Ohhh maaan na!
As a parent and grandparent it’s all too easy to be liberal with manna or more to the point, moolah. It's great entertainment to watch them enjoy whatever booty I can bestow upon them, like watching George stuff his face with junk food.
Never mind that they aren’t learning to forage for nuts and berries to get them through the winter when it’s so much more fun to play Candy Crush or send photos on Snapchat. Why should I ruin their summer by shooing them off their furry tails and insist they be productive? After all, if I run low on Manna/Moolah from Heaven, I’m sure the government has plenty to spare and will throw them everything they need.
I lean out the window and toss a juicy fig down to the ground. George waddles over, taking it between his paws. Ohhh, he’s so cute! Does anybody have a Snickers bar I can give him?