There is a certain bear stuffed with fluff who always seems to be there for me. His mind is usually on his stomach—not that he has much of a mind at all—but I really think he genuinely cares for me. The world is so big and scary from my point of view, but whenever I'm with him I don't feel scared anymore.
These are the thoughts running through my head as we sit on the rail of the bridge together, watching the sun set over the brook. The sky is tinted with hues of orange and pink, which reflect on the water as it flows away from us.
I look up at the bear, who gazes contently ahead at the horizon. Typical Pooh… probably thinking about what he will eat when he gets home.
Glancing down at his paw, I hesitate, then take it in my own. Pooh jumps, not having expected the contact, then looks at me with a smile. We both then turn our heads back to the sun, which is almost entirely under the horizon. The two of us sit there in silence for a long time.
"Pooh?" I ask at last.
"W-w-what…" I hesitate, not having thought out what I'm about to say, "… what do you think is the most important thing… for people to have? I-in life, I mean."
I watch the bear's brow furrow and smile fade as he realizes this question requires thought. He lifts the paw not holding mine to his head and taps himself in the temple repeatedly, and begins to mutter, "think… think…" under his breath. I wait patiently, knowing he doesn't do well with these philosophical-type questions. I half-expect him to say something silly like honey, so I'm surprised when he says something that actually makes some sense.
"I think," he finally says, "it's the little things."
"What do you mean?"
"Well… the little things that make you happy for no particular reason. Like… a jar of honey, or…"
"Or a beautiful sunset?" I suggest.
"Or a beautiful sunset. Just like this one."
I nod in agreement, satisfied with his answer.
"What about you, Piglet?" he asks, taking me by surprise. "What do you think is important for us to have?"
After a moment's thought, I shrug. "Each other."
"I-is something wrong?"
"I like your answer better than mine."
"Oh." I smile.
After a while, I rest my head on Pooh's arm and tighten my grip on his paw. The sky is now a deep shade of purple, with only a tiny bit of pink peeking over the horizon as the last rays of sunshine disappear. I close my eyes and sigh deeply.
I wake up in Pooh's arms as he walks down the dirt path. I didn't even realize I had fallen asleep, but here I am, sleeping like a baby with him carrying me.
"Pooh?" I whisper. "Where are we going?"
"I'm taking you to your house," he replies simply.
"Oh." I feel my ears droop slightly.
"Why do you sound sad? Don't you like your house?"
"Y-yes, but… it's so dark, and I don't want to be alone…"
I look up at Pooh, and despite the darkness of the night I can see his features soften into a sympathetic smile.
"Well, then," he says matter-of-factly, "I'll just take you home with me and you can sleep at my house."
"Really? Oh, thank you!" I hate the dark and I hate being alone and I especially hate being alone in the dark. But with Pooh there to keep me safe, I feel totally at ease.
When we reach the tree with "Mr. Sanders" scrawled above the door, Pooh sets me down and opens the door to let us in. I immediately run inside and hop onto his big, comfy bed. Pooh takes his time grabbing a midnight snack before changing into his nightgown and joining me. I scoot up against him, and he wraps a furry arm around me. I sigh contently and close my eyes once again.
"I love you, Pooh," I hear myself say, hardly even aware that I'm the one saying it.
"I love you too, Piglet," he replies softly.
We have what's important. We have the little things. We have each other. And I am more happy here and now with him than anywhere and anywhen with anyone else ever.