Imagine, instead of a cuddly dog or a purring cat, your pet was a playful, mischievous otter! That's the incredible experience Gavin Maxwell, the author of "Mijbil the Otter," shares with us in this fascinating chapter from the book "First Flight." Get ready to dive into a world of wet fur, slippery slides, and fishy feasts as we explore the summary of Mijbil's journey from the Tigris marshes of Iraq to the bustling streets of London. Once finish reading the summary, you can answer any questions related to the chapter easily. So, without any delay, let us start.
The author describes how his life changed after he decided to domesticate an otter after losing his pet dog in this lesson. He takes us on a voyage from Iraq to London, adjusting, playing, and travelling with Mijbil the otter, and how he built an inseparable friendship with him along the way.
About the Author
Gavin Maxwell was a Scottish naturalist and novelist, most recognized for his non-fiction work, particularly his work with otters.
Summary of Mijbil The Otter
Gavin Maxwell is the author of the prose named ’Mijbil, the Otter’. The author describes how his life changed after keeping an Otter as a pet as he lost his first pet dog. He is trying to take the audience through his journey of playing and all his experiences with Mijbil-the-Otter. His journey started from Iraq to London through a flight where he developed an attached bond with him. During his flight, the Otter created havoc and scared everyone. However, a kind-hearted air hostess helped the writer to travel with Mijbil.
Mijbil The Otter Summary In English
Summary of Mijbil the Otter starts with the author travelling along with his friend to Basra to receive his mail. After losing his pet dog, he became alone, and thus during his journey with his friend, he expressed his wish to keep an Otter as a pet. His friend agreed with him and suggested that he get one from the Marshes along river Tigris in Iraq. After reaching the destination, they found that only a friend’s mail had arrived. His friend received his mail and went away. He left a sack containing an Otter for the author. Being astonished he named the Otter Mijbil or Mij.
An Otter As A Pet:
The narrator said that Mij would take some time to get familiar with his surroundings. When Mij went to the bathroom, it jumped and rolled in the bathtub gladly. Mijbil loves playing with water and learned how to open the faucet by himself in a short time. In the Mijbil the Otter summary, the author says Mij loves to spend most of its time playing with marbles and rubber balls. His time is passing smoothly in Basra with Mijbil, and now it’s time to go back to England. However, British Airlines didn’t allow transporting animals due to which the author has to book a different flight that allows Mij on board.
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The author put the Otter in a box before the flight and left it for some while. When he returned, he saw Mij created different holes in the box and ruined the internal lining. He got frightened after seeing that blood was coming out from the air holes. The narrator hastily opened the box and saw that Mijbil was unconscious. Somehow, he managed to remove all the sharp edges from the box and placed the Otter again in the box.
There were only 10 minutes left for his flight to take off, so he rushed to the airport and caught the flight. Gavin told a summary of Mijbil to the air hostess as she was friendly and suggested the author place Mijbil on his lap. When he opened the box, the Otter disappeared and started developing chaos in the flight. It made all the passengers fearful. The air hostess in the flight helped Gavin to find Mij.
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When the author arrived in London with an Otter, he left people clueless. They could not understand the summary of Mijbil the Otter and kept guessing the name of the animal. Some people think him to be a baby squirrel, seal, or a hippo. However, no one was able to make a correct guess that it was an Otter. The most shocking event was when the labourer was digging a hole in the street and placed down all his tools after seeing the animal. He screamed, what’s this animal claiming to be?''
The Bond Formed Between Gavin And Otter
The author remained in London with his pet Otter for a month. Mij used to play with ping-pong balls, toys, rubber fruit, and other things for hours. While playing, he places the ball on the slanted top of the suitcase. Gavin was supposed to take Mijbil out for a walk and exercise. The Otter developed some of the habits on those walks. He went with the narrator like children running, playing, and touching things in London streets. Within a month, the author developed a strong bond between him and his pet Otter.
Beyond the Story: What Can Students Learn?
"Mijbil the Otter" offers a treasure trove of teaching opportunities for students:
Exploring themes of friendship and empathy: Students can delve into the unique bond between Gavin and Mijbil, discussing how their differences strengthen their connection. They can explore concepts like unconditional love, acceptance, and appreciating the extraordinary.
Understanding animal behavior: Mijbil's playful, curious nature offers a window into the fascinating world of otters. Students can research their habits, habitats, and unique characteristics, deepening their understanding of the natural world.
Appreciating diversity and embracing the unconventional: The story challenges traditional notions of pets and encourages students to embrace differences. It can spark discussions about acceptance, inclusivity, and celebrating what makes each individual unique.
Creative writing and storytelling: "Mijbil the Otter" can inspire students to unleash their own creativity. They can write stories about their own unique friendships, create their own mischievous companions, or even imagine Mijbil's adventures from his perspective.
After his dog died, Maxwell decided to keep an otter as his pet.
On the suggestion of a friend, he got an otter from the Tigris Marsh.
Maxwell felt that the arrival of the otter opened a new stage in his life.
The otter first appeared as a little dragon. He was covered with mud. Maxwell spent a lot of time and energy removing the dust.
Otters like to play in the water and cannot stand in front of the water.
He also likes to play with rubber balls. Marble toys are his favourite.
A few days later, Maxwell had to return to London.
Transport of Mijbil to London became a problem because British Airways did not allow animals on its flights.
Another airline agreed to pack the animal in a box.
Maxwell made a small box for the otter.
On the plane, the otter escaped from the box. Some passengers yelled and stood on their seats when they saw the otter on the plane.
Finally, the otter came back, lying on Maxwell's knees.
On reaching London, the otter was unfamiliar to most people. They simply made random assumptions.
In London, Mijbil learned to play ping-pong and developed certain habits.
"Mijbil the Otter" is more than just a story about a mischievous otter. It's a reminder that happiness can be found in the most unlikely places. It's a celebration of the unique bonds we form with animals, and the joy they bring to our lives. It's a call to embrace the different, the unusual, and the wet, slippery wonder of an otter named Mijbil.
So, the next time you feel lost or lonely, remember Mijbil. Remember that laughter and joy can be found in the most unexpected corners, and that sometimes, the best friends come with whiskers and a love for fish. And who knows, maybe one day, you too will have your own Mijbil-sized adventure, one that will fill your heart with fishy giggles and memories that will last a lifetime.