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Full Online Book HomeShort StoriesThe Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - V - The New Wheelbarrow
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The Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - V - The New Wheelbarrow Post by :szegez Category :Short Stories Author :Arthur Scott Bailey Date :April 2012 Read :1461

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The Tale Of Jimmy Rabbit - V - The New Wheelbarrow

V - The New Wheelbarrow

There was something that Jimmy Rabbit wanted. He had teased for it for a long time. And at last, after he had almost made up his mind that he wasn't going to get it, one day to his great joy his father brought home the very thing Jimmy had begged for. It was a wheelbarrow! Jimmy Rabbit could hardly believe his eyes.

"Well, young man, you ought to be pretty grateful for this," Mr. Rabbit said.

"Yes, Father!" Jimmy answered. He picked up the handles of the wheelbarrow, and began pushing it proudly about the dooryard. "I'm going to play with my wheelbarrow all the time after this," Jimmy said.

"I reckon you can do a little work with it, too," Mr. Rabbit told him. "I shall expect you to bring home the vegetables for the whole family, every morning."

"Yes, Father!" Jimmy answered. He thought that would be great sport. He didn't stop to think that it would take a good many vegetables to feed his father and his mother, his four sisters, his two brothers, and himself.

"I hope, now, to have a little time for recreation," Mr. Rabbit remarked.

"It's too bad you have to work so hard," said Jimmy. "Recreation" was a big word. Jimmy supposed that it was some kind of specially hard work. He did not know that it meant play. "I'll go down to Farmer Green's garden right away and get a load of his best vegetables!" Jimmy exclaimed.

Down in Farmer Green's garden Jimmy worked busily, loading his new wheelbarrow to the very top. And then he trundled it home again. No prouder youngster was ever seen in Pleasant Valley than Jimmy Rabbit, pushing that little wheelbarrow up the hill.

"Let me push it!" Frisky Squirrel begged.

But Jimmy Rabbit said that he mustn't let anybody else play with that wheelbarrow.

"Let me take hold of one handle!" Billy Woodchuck pleaded.

But Jimmy Rabbit told him that that was no way to wheel a wheelbarrow.

Somehow, the next day Jimmy didn't have half so much fun getting the vegetables. And the day after that he actually began to think that gathering vegetables was a good deal like work. And before a week had passed he just hated the sight of Farmer Green's garden.

But all Jimmy's friends still crowded around and begged him to let them push the wheelbarrow. And all the while he had been very firm. He had not given one of them leave to touch the barrow.

At last Jimmy Rabbit had an idea.

"I'll tell you what I'll do," he said to Frisky Squirrel. "If you weren't my best friend I'd never think of such a thing. And you mustn't expect I'm going to let you do this often----"

"Do what?" Frisky asked.

"Why, wheel my wheelbarrow!" said Jimmy.

Frisky Squirrel jumped high up in the air, he was so pleased.

"Hurrah!" he cried. "May I push it now, before you fill it with vegetables?"

"Well--no! It's getting late," said Jimmy. "My mother will be expecting me soon. I'll let you wheel the vegetables home for me. But first, you must gather them."

Frisky Squirrel was more than willing. And he filled the barrow with cabbages and turnips, lettuce and peas, while Jimmy Rabbit looked on and ordered him about.

"There!" said Jimmy, when the wheelbarrow was full. "Now we'll go home." And then, to Frisky Squirrel's surprise, Jimmy climbed on top of the load and sat himself down.

"What's that for?" asked Frisky.

"Why, to keep the vegetables from falling out!" Jimmy explained. "You see, you don't know how to wheel a wheelbarrow. You'll be tipping it, first one side and then the other. And we'd have to stop every few steps and pick up a turnip or a cabbage."

"But I don't want to wheel you!" said Frisky. "You're too heavy!"

"Oh, very well, then!" Jimmy answered. "If you don't care to wheel the wheelbarrow, it's all the same to me." And he started to jump down from his seat on top of the load.

"No, no!" Frisky cried. "Don't get off! I can manage all right!" After gathering all those vegetables, he didn't want to lose the fun of pushing the wheelbarrow.

"Walk fast, now!" Jimmy said. "We're late already."

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