Hello, I’m Rosie. I’m a beetle. I wrote a book called <em>The Voyage of the Beetle</em>about a wonderful adventure I shared with a curious and congenial young man named Charles Darwin. Charles later became a famous scientist. (Of course, he couldn’t have done it without a few gentle hints from me!)
“Charles Darwin and I first met under a rock. I was dreaming of sweet juicy rosebuds one sunny May morning in 1831, when a rude rustling of leaves and a dazzling shaft of light awakened me. An enormous face, framed by fly-away red hair, loomed above me. An immense hand came down. I struggled, scrambling and squirming, but I could scarcely unfold my wings, and I feared I was lost. An enormous blue eye peered at me through curled fingers….
My captor was a young man named Charles Darwin. Charles later became one of the most well-known scientists in the world…
He called me Rosie, after my fondness for that most elegant and fragrant of flowers. (I preferred to call him by his given name of Charles rather than his silly nickname of Gas, which came from an unfortunate chemistry experiment in his past.)…”
Our adventures began even before we left on our great voyage:
“We were on a collecting expedition, not long after we met, when Charles spotted an intriguing new beetle emerging from the bark of a tree. Snatching it up, he was about to pop it into a collection bottle when another, even more interesting beetle meandered by. Well, he still had on hand free, so he reached for that one, too. While he was trying to figure outhow to save both beetles, he spotted still another beetle crawling up a nearby tree trunk. Two hands, three beetles…what to do?
“No, Charles!” I cried, as I realized the solution he had in mind. But I was too late: into his mouth went the second beetle, in order to free his hand to capture beetle Number Three. Number Two was no about to stand for such treatment (And who could blame him?) “Take that,” he shouted, squirting very nasty juice into Charles’ mouth. Out he popped, damp but unharmed, and he scurried indignantly away.” …Charles’s burning curiosity, is patience in seeking answers, his careful observations, and his faithful record keeping …later led to his great discoveries about what he called the “,strong><em>mystery of mysteries</strong></em>:”
Why are there so many different species, or kinds, of living things on earth? Why are present day living things similar to ones in the past, but different too? Where do new species come from, and why do they arise? ”