Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Bedtime Story (18/5/2016)

To listen to me reading this week's bedtime story, just click here for the podcast!

Little Duck Gets Bored

The sun was shining down on Pear Tree Farm.  In the duck pond, Mother Duck was busy giving her ducklings a swimming lesson.  Dylan Duck, Dorothy Duck and Daphne Duck were all swimming along behind her, listening carefully and doing as they were told.  But the smallest, Little Duck, was lagging behind.

"Muuuum," he groaned.  "I'm bored."

Mother Duck turned to look at her littlest duckling.  "Bored?  How can you be bored, Little Duck?  The sun is shining, the water is lovely and we're going for a swim!"

"All we ever do is swim," Little Duck moaned.  "I want to do something else."

Mother Duck flapped her wings.  "Well, we are going for a swim," she said.  "If you want to do something else, I suggest you make sure that you're very careful.  I don't want you getting into trouble."

"I won't," Little Duck promised.  And with that, he climbed out of the pond, shook his wet feathers and waddled off in search of some fun.

After a while, Little Duck arrived at the pig pen.  "Hello?"  He called, as he squeezed through the fence.  "I'm Little Duck and I'm looking for some fun!"

"Fun?"  The biggest pig in the pen grunted.  "Come and join in, then; we're about to roll around in the mud!"

Little Duck paused.  He wasn't sure that sounded like much fun at all.  But, he was bored and he needed something exciting to do, so he flopped down into the thick, squelchy mud and began rolling from side to side.  

It didn't feel very nice.  It made poor Little Duck's feathers stick together.  He scrambled to his feet and shook his head.  "Sorry," he said.  "But I think I need a different kind of fun..."

And he hurried away from the pig pen, shaking his muddy wings as he went.

Soon, he came across some goats, gathered around a pear tree.  "Hello!"  Little Duck called, hurrying over.  "I'm Little Duck and I'm looking for something fun to do."

The goats all turned.  "Something fun, you say?"  One of them bleated.  "Well, we're trying to get some pears down from this tree, so we can munch on them.  You can join us, if you like?"

Little Duck nodded.  "Okay!  How do you get them down?"

"Like this," the goat replied, and he rammed his head against the trunk of the tree.  

Little Duck gasped.  "Oh... That looks... A bit painful..."  

"It's fun," the goat insisted.  "And if you knock a pear down, everyone cheers!"

Little Duck took a deep breath and then bumped his head against the tree.  It hurt.  He rubbed his sore head with his wing.  "I don't think this is my cup of tea," he said.  "Sorry to have troubled you."

Still caked in mud and now with a headache to boot, Little Duck carried on wandering through the farmyard.  Soon, he spotted Elsie, the farm cat, hiding behind a wall.  Little Duck rushed over.  "Hello Elsie," he called.  "Are you having fun?  Can I join in?"

Elsie hissed.  "Oh, for goodness sake, Little Duck!  I'm trying to hunt a mouse and you've just scared it away!"  She stretched out her claws and flicked her tail at him.  "If you're going to join me, you're going to have to be nice and quiet.  And get ready to pounce when I say!"

Little Duck sighed.  That didn't sound like fun.  "Never mind."

He trudged away, muttering under his breath.  He was starting to get hungry and the mud on his feathers was drying and making him itch.  He decided to try one more place...

Up in the paddock, the horses were munching on some hay.  "Hi, guys," Little Duck called.  "I'm looking for some fun..."

The smallest horse came trotting over.  "Do you know what's amazing fun?"  She asked.  "Galloping!  It's great; you go really fast and the wind blows through your mane.  Want to try it?"

Little Duck thought it sounded a bit scary, but he agreed, all the same.  He hopped onto the horse's back and clung on as tightly as he could.  With a whoosh, they were off, racing faster and faster across the paddock.  Little Duck squeezed his eyes shut.  He felt like he was going to fall off and get trampled on and the wind made him cold.

"Wasn't that fabulous?"  The horse asked, when she finally slowed to a stop.

"Oh, erm... Yes..."  Little Duck stammered.  "But I think I ought to go home, now..."

Little Duck turned and began waddling towards home.  He was dizzy and he definitely wasn't having much fun.  But, as he got nearer, he heard the sound of his brother and sisters splashing in the cool water of the pond.  Little Duck's feet started to move faster and faster until he was running.  "Look out!"  He cried, leaping into the water with a terrific splash.

"Look at the state of you!"  Mother Duck cried.  "What on Earth have you been up to?!"

Little Duck swam over and let Mother Duck gently preen his feathers, washing away the dried mud and leaving him clean and fresh.  "That's better," she told him.  "Did you have fun?"

Little Duck gave her a smile.  "I learned that the best fun you can have is by being with the ones you love the most."  

And off all the ducks went, swimming into the centre of the pond, laughing and splashing together.



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