God's little creatures
Ladybugs make me smile, but for an odd reason.
A ladybug is called 'lieveheersbeestje' in Dutch. 'Lieve heer' means 'dear lord', and 'beestje' means 'little creature'. God's little creature, basically. Quite a name for such a small insect. However, in the area where I grew up, it is known as a 'kukeluusje'. I don't know what that means, but that doesn't matter for now. The people there think that no animal is worthy of carrying the Lord's name; especially something as insignificant as a bug. I'm not a religious person, so I always laugh at this quirky thing that can be found in the local dialect. My mother does not.
'Don't call it that!' she often snapped at my sister, when both of us were still little and cute.
That made my sis cry: 'but I like "kukeluusje"!' Then she would go on a ramble, shouting that all her friends called it 'kukeluusje' too and that therefore, so should she. Lovely children's logic.
Mum is an atheist, like me, but living in the Dutch Bible Belt has made her much more petulant towards religious habits than I am. 'A ridiculous name for a ridiculous reason,' she snorted in reply, crossing her arms to give her disapproval even more 'oomph'. An atheist insisting on using the word ‘God’ – is it okay to find that funny?
One day, many years later, one of the high schools burned down - not mine, luckily. It happened during New Year's Eve, probably done by some kids who were fed up by this regime called 'education' that kept them under the thumb. The fire had reduced the building to nothing more than an empty skeleton. Ashes were swept up by the wind, making it look like the sky was filled with dark butterflies if you didn't know any better.
Within these shades of grey - not fifty, but it was close to that - there were some dots of red. Ladybugs coloured the grim scene, no longer wanting to hibernate since their simple logic told them that the heat that had awakened them was caused by the arrival of spring. Man, they must have been so disappointed.
One night – that was all that was needed to burn down a place of knowledge. If we can lose something so important so easily, what does that say about us? The ladybugs, on the other hand, weren't affected by the event at all. Well, except for having the morning blues, if they can feel such things. So since then, every time I see a 'kukeluusje', I have to think about that night. It makes me smile.
Mum was right. 'God's little creatures' sounds like a perfect name for them.
Anyway, this thing is not very creative, since most of it is based on childhood memories. The part about kukeluusje (and not being allowed to use that word) is true, just like the high school that burned down. But ladybugs waking up thanks to a fire? Nah.
Also; I'm still an atheist and I'm very happy about that. Please don't try to make me change my mind. It will not work anyway
FFM 2018 - the kidnapper and the constable
A lovely story. It would have been funny if the Lady bugs did wake up. (Do they even hibernate? O_o )
Thank you! and to be honest: I have no idea... I had to use 'hibernate' though, and this was the easiest option.
And by the way, C. S. Lewis was an atheist too.
but Lewis was an atheist that turned to Christianity, right?
Yup. Just throwing it out there. I don't know how many people knew that about him. I think it's interesting. Have you read his science fiction trilogy?
wow, and you kept on reading? don't think I would have done that...
Ladybug ladybug, fly away home.
Your house is on fire and your children are gone
All except one and that's Little Ann
For she crept under the frying pan
Also, the English name "Ladybug" (or Ladybird) is drawn from the Catholic term "Our Lady" referring to the Virgin Mary. So, religious leftovers there too.
I didn't know that! Thanks for telling me; I already found 'ladybug' such a funny name, now I know why
I found some more info about the ladybug rhyme. Apparently, it was a warning for Catholics back in Elizabethian times when holding Catholic Mass was illegal. (Don't you hate it when family squabbles get out of hand and suddenly people are getting burned at the stake?)
oh my, such a sweet song and with such an evil message! There is something interesting about subtle threats, but that's really dark... But at least it ends with a nice fire