A Christmas Under The Old Oak Tree
Published by Betty Fasig at Smashwords
Copyright 2004 Betty Fasig
Smashwords Edition, License Notes
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A CHRISTMAS EVE UNDER THE OLD OAK TREE
Marygrey had waited a very long time for the arrival of her babies. But babies cannot be rushed into the world and take their own time in coming. Say what you will, or wish as hard as you want, it will do no good at all, especially rabbit babies. They come when they have a good mind to. Marygrey’s babies had waited until Christmas Eve. Basil, the wild rabbit, was the father-to-be of Marygrey’s babies, and he had been constantly running in and asking were the babies here yet and how much longer was it going to be, until Marygrey said, “Basil, my dearest, Old Agnes is here with me, so you don’t have to worry. When they arrive she will run out right away and tell you they are here. Please go and wait for Santa with the others and when you see him, come and tell me.”
There are certain things that every animal, wild or tame, knows to be true. But the thing they know to be the truest of the true is that Santa Claus comes on Christmas Eve. Yes, Santa brings presents to every animal on earth, just as he brings toys to all the children of the earth. You may wonder how Santa has time in one night to bring all those presents. There are a lot of animals on earth, too. Well, the answer is quite simple. Time Stands Still on Christmas Eve! Not one minute on the clock ticks by, after Santa leaves the North Pole, until all the presents are delivered to every child and every animal everywhere.
So, while Marygrey waited for the arrival of the babies, Basil went to join the other animals who were waiting and watching under the Old Oak Tree for the first glimpse of Santa’s light as he passed overhead. Every animal on the farm was there, except Marygrey and Old Agnes, who was waiting with Marygrey for the babies to come, and Wooffer, who had not come out of the house yet. All of the Thousands, every squirrel for a mile around, the Armadillos, Cho Lee Yen, Camille and all the lizards, the Bully Frogs, The Banana Spiders from the Republic, Reba and Henry — and all the Hoppers and Bugs — and, of course, Larry, Curly, Moe and Margaret the chicken (her eggs had not hatched). They were all there waiting for Santa to go by in his sleigh to deliver presents to everyone and they would be the first to see him, they hoped.
None of the animals had ever seen Santa up close, except Wooffer had seen a picture his mom had shown him in a book called, “The Night Before Christmas.” But every animal had listened to stories their moms and grandmoms had told them when they were very young and each one knew in his heart how Santa looked. He was Beautiful!
Wooffer knew it was about time for Santa to go by, so he asked his mom if he could go wait with the animals to see his light as it went by. She was putting the last decorations on the Christmas tree. “Go on and watch and bark as soon as you see anything and I will come out, too.” she said smiling. So Wooffer went to join the animals under the Old Oak Tree to wait for Santa to go by.
Wooffer went out and said, “Merry Christmas,” to everyone. He had heard the news of Marygrey’s babies coming.
Basil was almost in a trance from the excitement of the babies and waiting for Santa. He kept looking at the sky, muttering, “Oh, My! Oh! … Oh My!”
Wooffer saw Margaret standing by herself, gazing up at the night sky.
Wooffer had not seen Margaret since she was hatching eggs, but he had heard that they had not hatched. He cautiously went up to her. Wooffer never knew if she was going to fly at him feet first or not.
“Hi, Margaret, sorry about the eggs not hatching.’’ he said.
“Me, too. I thought for sure the eggs would hatch this time. But they didn’t. Maybe next time,” Margaret said.
Wooffer said, “I hope so. Have you heard that Marygrey’s babies are coming tonight?”
Margaret stood there and gave Wooffer one eye, then the other, and said. “No, I had not! I must go to her at once! Poor thing!” And off she strutted as fast as she could run,