Bruno Honeybear loved being a beekeeper and honey farmer. Being an introvert he loved the solitude of the job. It was only him and the soft humming of his bees all day.
The location of his small beekeeping set up was also perfect. The hives was set in a corner behind their stable home. A hedge of Sugarbushes kept all unwelcome company out, and the view beyond the hedge was just breathtaking.
Bruno was still admiring the view, when the sudden appearance of a stranger through the hedge woke him from his daydreaming. Was she real or just a fiction of his imagination. After blinking ferociously for a few seconds the strange lady, hasn't disappeared so Bruno made the assumption that she was real.
"Sorry, I see that I have startled you. I hope I'm not intruding. I'm Damara de Wild from Rooibosh Hill." the strange lady explained. "What? You mean THé Damara de Wild, the travelling Sylvanian?" Bruno couldn't believe his ears. "Yes, that is me!" Damara giggled. "Oh, ok. But I'm sure this wasn't your intended manner of arrival." Bruno asked skeptical. "No not at all, but I wanted to explore the area a bit, so I asked the bus driver to drop me along the road. Even though I live in Rooibosh Hill, my family and I have never come down this far South, and I admit, I got lost a bit. I heard your soft humming, and decided to climb through the hedge, and here I am." Damara explained giggling still.
"Well, you have to come and meet my wife, Irene. She is a huge fan of you and your travelling endeavours, she has followed your journey with great interest." Damara followed Bruno around the corner of the house, and was quite surprised by what she saw. Though it was the smallest of houses, it was incredibly cosy. She immediately felt welcome.
"Yoohoo, Irene. Honey! Look who is here!" Bruno called out. Irene turned to find her husband and who she was sure was Damara de Wild, but which was highly unlikely, staring at her in amusement.
"Damara?" Irene began carefully. Damara giggled some more, "Yes it is indeed me, nice to meet you Irene!" Irene was really surprised and immediately wanted to ask Damara a million questions about her travels, but she remembered her manners, and welcomed her in a courteous manner to Sugarbush Valley.
"Thank you, Irene. It is really lovely to finally have reached my final destination. I loved the travelling but I want to go home now. I miss my family." Damara explained "I just want to ad, you have a beautiful home, it is so cosy... aaaah and look at the sleeping baby. She is adorable. Is it normal for her to sleep outside?" Damara inquired cautiously. "Yes, I know it is a bit strange, but up North were we come from it is normal to let babies sleep outside, it is believed that the cold fresh air is good for them. In the summer it is easy, but during the cooler months I dress her quite warmly for nap times." Irene explained.
"I guess I have to go, the people in the village is expecting me, can you maybe just point me in the right direction..." Damara asked. "Oh nonsense, you will stay for lunch. You have already walked far enough and must be exhausted, you can always blame the bus schedule for being late." Irene interrupted.
While Damara entertained, little Harriet, Bruno and Irene quickly prepared lunch.
They had a scrumptious meal of fresh fried fish, mushrooms and biscuits. Lunch was delicious and Damara realised just how hungry she was.
After lunch, Bruno served tea and pastries to the two ladies, after clearing away the plates. While he lie down for a quick nap, Damara and Irene discussed Damara's travels in great detail. Irene loved to hear the stories and relived the journey with her new friend.
After an hour of napping, Bruno announce that he must go into the village for some business and he will gladly accompany Damara. She indicated that she had to meet a mouse called Sydney at the Information Centre.
The two women greeted each other as if they were old friends ...
...and with promises of more tea parties, Damara was on her way.
The walk into the village was a bit further than Damara anticipated, she began to feel the exhausted. "Here we are," Bruno announced, "and yes there is Sydney waiting for you."
Despite her exhaustion, Damara felt like giggling once more, when she met Sydney. He was indeed a comical little mouse.
He must have been relieved to see Damara, as he grabbed her, and almost kissed her, luckily he just gave her gigantic mouse hug. Damara wasn't sure if she should feel offended or welcomed by this intrusive behaviour.
"Thank you for bringing her into the village, Bruno." Sydney said. "We have arranged a room for her in the Commune, luckily the Timbertops went West to Slydale Hollow and offered their room to her.
Damara was relieved that they reached the Commune soon, though everything was arranged beforehand, she was always worried if a village knew about her arrival and if they would welcome her. Having a safe place to rest her head, was mostly her biggest concern.
In the kitchen of the Commune, Sydney introduced Damara to the rest of his family. His wife, Mona, was just as comical as her husband...
... but the kids was just plain cute. Damara immediately warmed to the family, and had the urge to hug and squeeze the kids, but refrained from doing so. She wouldn't want to annoy her hosts.
Sydney suggested taking her to her room on the next floor and while walking there, quickly explained the setup of the Commune. It was certainly a fantastic concept and Damara decided to tell Mayor Bill of Rooibosh Hill of this.
Damara was overwhelmed by the cosiness of her room. She sensed that it was decorated with great care, to make her stay as comfortable as possible. The fresh flowers and fruit basket didn't go unnoticed.
Sydney also quickly showed her the bathroom.
Finally she was alone in her room. She knew she had to do her diary write up, and it would be lovely to take a bath...
... but she just couldn't muster the energy, and soon fell into a dreamless sleep.