W – Good morning Matius. Thank you for agreeing to this little chat.
M – A pleasure Widodo. Have you had breakfast? Would you like a little piece of fish?
W – I don’t eat much fish Matius.
M – What did you have for breakfast then? Calamari?
W – Eeeew! Is that why your breath smells like that?
M – Fish is very good for you Widodo
W – Smelly, smelly, smelly. It makes your breath stinky and smelly and fishy-fishy-pongy-pongy.
M – Oh. No one’s ever said that to me before.
W – Let it not upset you Matius. But I think you need to be told in case you’re thinking of breathing all over tree kangaroos. Or kissing them.
M – I wasn’t thinking of such things Widodo. I thought I was here to have a chat (at this point dear reader Matius twists his beak which is his way of showing he is displeased)
W – Oh, yes. So, tell me Matius, when did you first discover The Splendid Reef?
M – I remember my father and my grandfather telling me about it when I was very little. They said it was like a garden, but underwater, with flowers more colourful than anything you could see in the rainforest. And trees as tall as the ones on land.
W – Did they tell you it was all fluffy?
M – Fluffy?
W – Don’t you remember? When you took me out to look at it and I stuck my head under the water it was very, very fluffy.
M – Well, it isn’t to me Widodo. That’s why i got you that mask. Sea turtles don’t need masks to see clearly underwater.
W – Tree kangaroos do.
M – But I’ve got a special membrane across my eye so I can see underwater as well as I can on land. Better even. All turtles have one.
W – Why don’t tree kangaroos?
M – Because you don’t normally go swimming
W – I’m not a normal tree kangaroo.
M – So I’ve come to learn, Widodo. You were asking me about the reef, if you remember.
W – Ah yes. I’m not so good at keeping on task this morning for some reason.
M – You didn’t have any fish for breakfast, that’s why.
W – Hmmm. Anyway, Matius, how much of the reef have you seen?
M – An awful lot. But here’s a strange thing Widodo. I have cousins who have swum far to the south of here. Swum for many days and they’ve been to a reef even bigger than ours!
W – Bigger even! Where is it? Can you take me there?
M – I don’t know if it’s possible Widodo. My cousins are strong swimmers. Even they were tired and they weren’t carrying a tree kangaroo on their shell.
W – I thought The Splendid Reef was the only reef anywhere.
M – The Splendid Reef is very special Widodo, no doubt about that, but this other reef is enormous. It’s hundreds of kilometres long. You could spend your whole life exploring it and never see it all.
W- It’s hard to imagine Matius.
There is more of our chat for you to enjoy, naturally, but too much talking wears me out so maybe it wears you out too.
Why not take a few moments for a nap (that’s what I’d do) before reading on.