Now the sloth bears are out in the open, as it were, and we're all back safety from Not Greenbelt 15, we thought we ought to find some practical use for them.
The obvious thing was to use them as replacement sled dogs. I love huskies - they always look so happy in their work. And sloth bears being much bigger, I reckoned they would be good for shifting bigger loads. Like Hnaef.
So we invested a quid to buy a shopping trolley at Morrisons, brought it home and tried it out on the drive.
Bit of a mistake. A trolley on a gravel drive is, it turns out, unstable. Poor Burton chipped a tooth finding that out. But there's a nice smooth bit of tarmac, runs down from the Orchard to the Doily Shed. The Doily Shed where the Beaker Folk were singing merry cider-making songs while pressing the first of the autumn's crop, out of the reach of the rain.
So we shoved our test pilot back in, with a gumshield this time, stuck the coal scuttle helmet on his head, and told the sloth bears to go for it.
They loved it. Charged down the road, swung off at the last minute, shot Burton straight into the Doily Shed in the sort of accident that could only happen if you've watched too much "Last of the Summer Wine."
So we ran into the Doily Shed. Burton was laying in a great pile of apple pomace awaiting pressing, covered in what was basically apple sauce, shouting "Mush! Mush!"
Which, ironically, was what he should have been shouting in the first place.