Masha and the Bear 2.0 in the time of the Coronavirus 19

Prologue to Masha and Orso 2.0 at the time of Coronavirus

The idea of writing a fairy tale for children to explain what was happening in this particular moment in the world, using a well-known comic superhero, Spiderman, had a wide echo on social media and I thank you for the testimonials of satisfaction that through social media you sent me.

This led me to write another tale with a setting that could be well accepted and known also by girls as well as by boys.

So here I propose a fairy tale based on a Russian animated television series: Masha and the Bear, well known by our children.

This cartoon has references, as regards some characters, with China and therefore I thought it could be the right context to explain, to our boys and girls, what now is happening, linking their attention to something they know and like very much.

As always, this story has no claim, it tries to bring some serenity to our families in this dramatic moment. As always there will be a paper form and an audio of the story to make the task easier with our children.

Happy reading and listening!!!

Masha and Orso 2.0 at the time of Coronavirus

Orso was getting ready for daily nap in his favourite armchair inside his house carved from a tree trunk. He had lunch abundantly, eating, among other things, the delicious honey that the industrious bees produced in the hives of his garden, he had prepared the usual digestive tea using the beloved samovar to heat the water and now he would have enjoyed on TV, with parable and set-top box, his favourite programme: a football game!

Fortunately, Masha was not around, the Pig was as always in the garden, dozing in the sun next to his favourite puddle, listening to music, the Rabbit was not trying to steal the carrots from the garden and also the Bees outside the house, after much work to produce honey, allowed themselves a well-deserved rest.

What could be better than not watching in peace a football game on TV in his comfortable armchair? After a few minutes, Bear was already snoring...

At one point he was wakened with a start by a Masha’s scream! She had come his home for about an hour, and was reading a women's fashion magazine that surely She-Bear had left on the table in front of the TV last time she came to visit Bear.

But why had Masha screamed and interrupted Bear's blissful dreams? The answer was very simple, an extraordinary edition news had appeared on the TV and had interrupted the football game, and the journalist was talking about a very mysterious and contagious disease, which arose in nearby China, specifically in Whuan, a very popular city famous for its popular food market.

The news said we know very little about this disease. But meanwhile, while the images were scrolling on the TV, it was saying that the scientists had managed to isolate the infectious agent, it was a virus that seeing on TV, Bear said to himself, oddly resembled a soccer ball with so many spikes on it, like spines of his Hadgehogs friends, who often visited him.

As the TV news continued, Dasha came in the living room of the Bear house, arrived as usual by train to visit her cousin Masha, and also came She-Bear, with whom Bear was secretly in love, bringing him the usual weekly crossword review.

But all the other animals, alarmed by Masha's scream, also came. In fact, the white dog with brown spots, the Goat that had stopped grazing the grass in the garden, the Rabbit with the inevitable carrot in his teeth, the Pig with headphones to hear the music, and breathless the Squirrels with their fircones were also arriving.

The alarming news from TV was heard in a religious silence by all our animal friends. It was thought that at the origin of the disease that was spreading rapidly from China to the whole world, there were bats, very appreciated as food by the Chinese, who could have been the carriers of the virus that had subsequently infected man.

However, the TV service also said that no other animal could be responsible for this infection and our friend Dog breathed a sigh of relief... he knew in fact how humans, in the grip of irrational fear, could be dangerous by attributing absolutely non-existent guilt to pets!

At this point the news of the epidemic had spread and the Wolves came to Bear’s garden with their scrambled ambulance to find out what was really going on. The news given by the TV was now overlapping each other, and to contain the spread of the virus, planes, ships, trains would have stopped soon...

Suddenly the wise Dasha, disconsolate and whispering, said to Masha and Bear “Penguin who lives in Antarctica will no longer be able to reach us with his plane, not even Tiger who lives far away in the Russian steppes, but I won’t be able to catch you on the train either!"

The discomfort and the fear began to spread among our friends... At this point Bear, wise as always, sensing that something had to be done to cheer everybody up, took a book from his well-stocked library he remembered having, the title was "Viruses these unknown...!" And, turning to Masha with the good-natured and sly expression that the girl knew very well, Bear handed the book to her...

Masha, who, since the shocking news had appeared on TV, behaved towards Bear, not as she often did in a disrespectful and mischievous way but, strangely, as a wise and judicious girl, understood that Bear wanted her to read to everyone animals that book, to inform them, correctly, of what was going on!

Anyway, Masha said to herself, they would have plenty of time to do it! In fact, the TV news was closing, giving news that for some time, to avoid spreading the infection as much as possible, they would all have to remain closed at home, with the possibility of going out only to go buy some food or to go to the doctor!


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