The Boston Rabbit

Boston has come into several conversations recently, and looking through old photographs, I have come across some images I took when I visited my friend Sue in Boston in the 1980s.
It was very hot. I arrived while there was a heatwave. We didn’t do a lot of the sights, but hung out, playing long and complicated games of Scrabble late into the night when the air was cooler.
Sue’s pet rabbit would sometimes knock the board over, but how he enjoyed those evenings. Let loose to run around the ground floor he would leap into the air for the sheer plaesure of it. It made me realise just how inappropriate most rabbits’ accommodation is.
That’s not to say that letting him have such freedoms came without problems. Originally I believe Sue had planned to have him as a house rabbit, inspired, I think, by Felicity Kendal’s house rabbit in The Mistress. She hadn’t counted on him choosing the sofa as a toilet, or his extreme need to chew everything in reach.
By the time I visited, he had been confined to half the front porch, and in contrast with his wild relatives who dig burrows underground, his apartments were high rise. He had a large dog cage and inside there was an attractive piece of driftwood for him to chew.
Sometimes he’d join us at the back, and nibble on a carrot, or go very soppy and still while Sue brushed him.

Bunny Love

Bunny Love

I nicknamed him Destructo, but I fell in love with him too. He didn’t seem to know he was supposed to be a shy prey animal. I missed the visit by the plumber when Destructo peed on his foot. Rabbits have quite large capacity in their bladders. When we went to the petshop, we looked in vain for rabbit toys. There were none, so we got him some designed for budgerigars. One had a bell in it. Destructo quickly learned that on the occasions when he was confined to his half porch, he could command our attendance by throwing this toy about so that it rang. I remember one evening when Sue’s sister and her husband came over, and all four humans ended up with our gin and tonics or whatever sitting in the rabbit pen.
He did a grand job of eating up dead leaves from plants, and an even grander job of Ambassador. Ever since that holiday, I have thought I should like a rabbit. He had such a character, enjoyed socialising so much, and was a very handsome creature.
I did see some of the sights of Boston in the end, but it was Destructo who made the biggest impression on me. Sue is coming to London in August. I am wondering if she’ll return with more photos of MasterB than most visitors.


24 thoughts on “The Boston Rabbit

  1. Bunnies. My upstairs neighbor’s rabbit chewed an enormous hole in the deck, which had to be replaced with she and the bunny moved out. They come, they chew, etc.

    But I need to know: American Scrabble vs English Scrabble – does the English version have more “u”s ? The vowel that you all insist belongs in places we no longer find useful.

  2. I read that rabbits are as intelligent as cats. At one point I had 16 rabbits; the first was essentially a house rabbit who thought she was a cat. She lay in the window, making passers-by do a double take! 😀

    • They are very sociable aren’t they, used to living in groups. That makes it even sadder that so many are forgotten and left in filthy conditions in hutches at the end of the garden.
      Sixteen rabbits is quite a lot. Did you succeed in house training them?

      • 10 were babies and found homes quickly. The first rabbit came indoors till I got my second rabbit, then they stayed in their hutches in pairs, with a run for summer. In hindsight, it wasn’t ideal, no.

  3. When CH was assigned to Ft. Polk, Louisiana we met a couple that had a rabbit for a pet. It was my first close up experience with a rabbit. They had him potty trained to a litter box(I never saw anything to doubt that to be true) and he was very friendly and cuddly. I always looked forward to visiting them. Nice to hear about the Boston Bunny and how nice that Sue will visit in August!

    • Thanks Pix. Another friend here, when I came home and was raving about Destructo, asked me what colour he was. She then said she had had a two rabbits, one white and one black, and the black one was the one with character and personality.
      I haven’t seen Sue for years. It will be great. We have known each other since our teens.

  4. My rabbit, Max, chewed on everything, including the hood to my favorite sweatshirt. I still wear the sweatshirt and people say, “I think you have a moth problem.” My reply, “It was a rabbit.” they give me a strange look. Rabbits are great pets–not meant for children though. But they do destroy everything. Everything!

    • I think you have hit the nail on the head, they are not good pets for children. Often they don’t like to be picked up, and they have sharp teen and strong back legs.

  5. Awww… so sweet to see a picture of him. He was a smart and splendid beast!
    Better brush up on my Scrabble game.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s