My Mussel Memory

Once, a long time ago my friend came to my house to play and
we went to the River Mourne close to where I live. We came to
a meadow that had a sandy place with cobbles near the river
and we sat down to eat our lunch.
Suddenly I saw a grey thing on the sandy bank that looked like a
dead crab. I told my friend and my sister and they said “where
is it?” I pointed to the mysterious looking shell and they both
said “I see it too!”
So we asked my Daddy if we could pick it up and he said “OK.”
To our surprise it wasn’t a dead crab – it was a large river
mussel shell!
We took it to my Mum at home because she is a river engineer
and she said “that might be the shell of a fresh water pear
mussel, they are very special and can live for a hundred years
but they need very clean crystal clear water.”
My friend set the shell gently on the garden table. We looked
and looked at it, hoping for a shiny pearl to appear but the shell
seemed empty. My Mum showed us a book called “Maggie The
Mussel”. It had lots of pictures and explained how special
Freshwater Pearl Mussels are. We were not sure what kind of
Mussel we found and if the little creature was still inside but we
took it back to its home at the river and placed it in the water just in case! I hope the water stays clean enough for them.
Now I every time I visit the River I look for Mussels or anything else that looks special. We see a friendly Heron standing on a rock every day and sometimes we see fish jumping but you have to look very carefully. My Mummy said that the Heron is looking carefully for fish too. I haven’t seen a shell since that fun day long ago, but I will never forget my Mussel Memory.