I was sitting on an old bench seat in the shade on a hot summer's morning, under a big old willow tree reading a book when I thought I heard a very small voice.
I looked around a little bewildered but wasn't able to find where the voice was coming from.
"Hey, Mister. Hey, Mister!" The voice continued. "Can't you hear me? I'm shouting as loud as I can you know."
This time I had a careful look about and discovered a small snail on a twig which was growing on another tree near to the willow.
"Is that your voice I can hear little fella? Well I'll be; I had no idea snails could talk" I said looking quite surprised.
"If you used a bit more of your imagination, you would find that most things can talk. It's just that humans are to busy to be bothered about small creatures and don't even notice them speaking in a language they can understand eventually"
We continued our conversation and the longer we talked, the better we understood each other.
One of the things we spoke about was that the snail had an uncle in Queensland and that he wanted to pay him a visit by Christmas.
The unfortunate thing was that if he decided to slide to all the way up to Queensland it would take him nearly all his lifetime to get there and it would be quite dangerous on those big roads.
After talking for some time about his dreams, we decided that the quickest and best way to get there was for him to be mailed in the post.
We'd have to get him a little box, but strong enough so he wouldn't get crushed and then put in plenty of food for him to eat on his journey.
We decided that I could put him in the post and mail him to my grandson who lived in Townsville which was only a couple of kilometres from where the little snail's uncle lived.
I wrote a letter to my grandson Kurt, explaining our situation and asked if he would be able to help us out and deliver this very special box when it arrived at its destination. Kurt was pretty excited about the whole thing and agreed.
When I told Kurt about the talking snail, he showed no surprise at all and then he began to tell me that he often spoke to many creatures in their own language. He said it just took time and a lot of care - and you had to be a good listener.
We decided that if the little snail was to get there by Christmas, we would have to get busy with the arrangements.
The next morning, a good strong box was bought at the post office. The little snail knew he would be tumbled a bit, but he also knew of the great care that had been taken to get him on this big adventure, and that everything would be alright.
I waited for a couple of days and Kurt telephoned me to say he had received the package which contained little snail and he had arrived safe and sound. Kurt said that he had delivered the little snail to his uncle that very day.
My only disappointment was that I never found out if the little snail had a name, or what it was…