Saturday, July 11, 2009

A Friend

Before they went Christmas shopping that year, my parents stopped for a few drinks. My brothers and I were probably home with Grandma and my parents were fully taking advantage of a night without kids. The story goes that those few drinks helped my mom convince my dad to buy me a certain bear with a yellow tracksuit. Albert the Running Bear quickly became my favorite stuffed animal and friend. Dad has been known to say it is the best $75 he has ever spent.

Albert traveled rather extensively with us, to visit family in Canada and several trips to Florida. There are few childhood pictures of me that don't feature the bear. Albert came along to college where he was the victim of a brief bearnapping (luckily the perpetrator sent me ransom notes via e-mail so I quickly got the bear back). Albert may or may not still sleep with me.

A few years ago, I tried my hand at bidding for an Albert on eBay. I lost several auctions that year. Evidently like new condition Alberts are now a collectors item and some people want them for collections. I wanted a "new" Albert to share with any little guy or girl who would come my way.

With Milo now showing more interest in stuffed animals, I decided to try my luck at eBay again. I found an Albert with a green tracksuit and the original tags on it. I was lucky enough to be the high bidder.

Albert the Running Bear (green) is on his way to our house. At this point, the bear and Milo are about the same size, but when Milo is three years old, I plan on giving him his very own Albert. I can only hope he finds a friend as true as I did.

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