TWO BEARS

The colourful little guy who looks down on me from a window on my way into town is a much-loved figure who since appearing as the title character in the book 'A Bear Called Paddington' published on 13th October 1958 has become a children's favourite worldwide. I was sad to learn today that he has become a literary orphan on the death of his creator, Michael Bond.

This reminded me of another ursine character of children's literature, 'Winnipeg', a bear brought to Europe by a Canadian army officer as a mascot in the first world war and given to London Zoo when the regiment returned home after the war. The b&w snapshot here is of a little boy named Christopher Robin meeting the bear on a visit with his father, A.A.Milne, who thought it might be a nice idea to write some children's stories inspired by the visit.

I met the real grown-up Christopher Robin Milne at the zoo in 1980 when he was invited to unveil a statue of another bear inspired by 'Winnipeg', or 'Winnie The Pooh' as renamed by Milne senior, and thought it might be a nice idea to write something about . . . well, you get my drift, don't you?

The moral of this story is that there is no such thing as a new idea, as warned by Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882) -- "All my best thoughts were stolen by the ancients."

A sight to cheer one up normally on a walk into town. A sad day today though. I had always thought that Paddington was older than he is. Thank you for putting me straight on that one. It would be a good quiz question for this week I suppose.




posted June 28th, 2017  
A lovely tribute, especially when Michael Bond, author of Paddington, just died at 91.
posted June 28th, 2017  
You are a source of so much information Arthur! I didn't realise Christopher Robin was a real person and it's great that you know the dates of when these wonderful books were published. Thank you for being so knowledgeable
posted June 28th, 2017  
Hey! Great image. A great idea today. Nicely done.
posted June 28th, 2017  
All sorts of great memories about Winnie the Pooh and Paddington Bear.
posted June 29th, 2017  
Very nice.
posted June 29th, 2017  
Great images to go with your interesting story :)
posted June 29th, 2017  
If you have grand children Arthur, I bet you are their favourite Grand Father. They would never tire of your wonderful stories.
posted June 29th, 2017  
Two lovely images and reminders of some of my favourite books. I have been reading Paddington Bear to a class of six year olds and they loved it.
posted June 29th, 2017  
Great shot!
posted June 29th, 2017  
FAVtastic capture of two wonderful bears (and boy) and the history to go with them is wonderful. Being an arctophile since 1985 I am familiar with both stories - and now sad to hear of Michael Bond's death. When i was in England in 1992 I just had to buy a genuine English Paddington - which I did, and he flew home as hand luggage with me! He now stands guard in my passage :) fav
posted June 29th, 2017  
A lovely tribute to Michael Bond. Fav!! 😀
posted June 29th, 2017  
Very timely post Arthur, a very much loved character!
posted June 29th, 2017  
A lovely idea for a photograph - I loved Paddington and so did my children.
posted June 30th, 2017  
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