Bob and the Strawberries

 

Everybody knows that Bob Bunny loves rutabagas better than anyother thing to eat. But when Bob was just a little rabbit, livingin his mother's burrow in the big clearing, he loved strawberries more than anything.

Fortunately, there was a nice strawberry patch just a little ways into the forest, in a little clearing. Bob thought of it as his very own strawberry garden. Most of the other rabbits wouldn't go through even a little bit of forest, even for the finest strawberries. But Bob went there often, and usually came home with his belly so full of berries that he had to walk on tiptoes.

One day, Bob was feeling in the mood for strawberries, and off he went through the leaves to his strwberry patch. But when he came to it's edge, he saw a that another rabbit was already there. The other rabbit was big, with a huge brown spot on his back. Bob had learned that big rabbits would sometimes beat up small rabbits forvery little reason, and so he tried to quietly hop up to the edgeof the patch and eat some of the strawberries growing there, to be safe. But, but the bigger rabbit heard, and spun around to faceBob. He then bellowed, "Hey, Skinny, get away from my strawberries!"

Now, Bob wanted strawberries almost every day. But on this day, he REALLY wanted some; he felt he just couldn't go without any until tomorrow. But the other rabbit was a lot bigger, and Bob wasn't in the mood to be kicked.

So, Bob said, "OK, never mind, I was just taking a walk", and hopped quickly away. But he hadn't given up on his strawberry snack. When Bob really wanted something, he usually found a way toget it.

As Bob came back into the great clearing, he saw lots of other rabbits playing. He looked until he found what he was looking for a rabbit who was all grey, and about the same size as the rude rabbit who was eating Bob's strawberries. Bob hopped right up to him and asked if he could play, too.

The big rabbit looked at Bob, and said, "You're too small. This is a game for big rabbits." But Bob kept asking, until the grey rabbit said that he could play. "But," he said, "You can't be on my team. You'll be too slow."

"That's fine," said Bob, "I want to be on the Spotted Rabbit team. Spotted rabbits are better."

Now the grey rabbit looked annoyed. Bob tried to look innocent,and quickly added, "A spotted rabbit told me so. He said rabbits with no spots are stupid and slow." The big rabbit looked bored, and started to turn away. So Bob added, "He said, especially grey ones." Now the big grey rabbit turned around. "Show me this rabbit!", he demanded. And Bob led the way, toward the edge of the clearing.

As they went, Bob kept making up insults about rabbits without spots, and telling the big grey rabbit that the rabbit in the patch had told him them. By the time they got to the edge of the clearing, the big rabbit was very angry. When they came to the edge of the great clearing, the big grey rabbit stopped. "I don't see any spotted rabbit!, he said angrily.

"He's in the strawberry patch!", said Bob, "It's just through these bushes."

"I'm not going into the forest", the big rabbit said to Bob. "Even to teach a silly rabbit a lesson".

Bob sighed loudly, and acted disappointed. "I guess that spotted rabbits are braver, too", he said sadly.

That did it. The plain rabbit went with Bob to the patch. When he got there, he immediately began arguing with the spotted rabbit. The two big rabbits argued and argued. While they fought, Bob ate all the strawberries he could, until his belly was the most full it had ever been. Even on tiptoes, it dragged on the ground.

As Bob slowly tiptoed home, he could hear the two rabbits stillf ighting. "Ha, ha!," said Bob to himself, "I guess that the little rabbits are the best of all!