It was a beautiful spring afternoon when the three little ones decided to go for a walk to the river
through the bush where all the animals were grazing. Liam led the way, followed by Marie Eline
who was busy making sure that Robert didn't fall down, as there wasn't a proper path to walk on.
They had their heads down, when all of a sudden they saw Mrs Emuwith her young chick grazing amongst the trees.
They went up to her and gave her some bread and she thanked them very much, saying how kind it was of them, seeing how dry everything was, making it rather difficult to find food.
Robert was busy making friends with the little chick,
and wanted to take him home with him in his red pull cart but Mrs Emu felt that that wouldn't be such a good idea. And so the children said 'goodbye' to them and carried on with their walk.
Just then a big bird came flying over them calling out 'Hello, how are you? Have you brought some bread?'
'Yes, we have' they all answered back, and the beautiful bird came sailling down and perched on a branch and accepted the bread the children offered him.
'Mmmm this is nice, how kind of you, thank you!' he said, and when he was finished off he flew.
'Oooh! look' said Marie Eline, 'How lovely to see you Mrs. Bandicoote'
'Isn't it a lovely day'
'Yes it is indeed, are you going down to the river?' replied Mrs. Bandicoote ' If you are, watch out for the wombats, they are in a really grumpy mood today.
I don't know why, but I think its because someone disturbed them by digging around their home.'
They heard a lorikeet call out to them from above 'Yes, its true what Mrs. Bandicoote says,
the wombats are definitely
not in a good mood. I've never seen them so cranky'
As the children continued on their walk, in single file, as it was getting a bit overgrown with the bushes and undergrowth,
Liam told them to be careful where they stepped.
He pointed to a spider that was scurring around.
They kept going, and chatting away about who they had just met, and wondering what it could be that had made the wombats so cross.
Liam said that it didn't take much to make them cross, they were always a bit on the grumpy side anyway.
As they turned a bend in the path they saw Mrs Kangaroo and Joeywho had a lovely bunch of flowers he had picked.
and as soon as he saw the children he called out 'Hello, its good to see you. Would you like some flowers?'
'I've picked them specially for you, as I just knew you would be coming this way!'
'Why, that is the most lovely present, thank you' said Marie Eline,
and she skipped up to Mrs Kangaroo and Joey and gave him a big hug.
Liam and Robert came up behind her and also gave Joey a hug.
They asked them if they had heard anything about the wombats and Mrs Kangaroo said
'Well, I did hear a few loud voices, but I don't quite know what it was all about.'
It was really rather nice walking in this part of the bush, the air was so nice to breathe in, and the noises of the different animals and birds were so pleasant to listen to.
The children tried to identify all the different calls of the birds. There was the currawong cawing away, the cockatoo screeching, the kookaburra laughing his head off,
the bellbirds sounding like a bell ringing, and the maggies on a lower tone, just chatting away to each.
Not to mention all the little blue crested wrens and other small birds that were darting around.
Liam was trying to see if he could spot a koala to show Marie Eline and Robert but they all seemed to be hiding.
Koalas got rather tired during the day, and sat up on the trees on the branches dozing off to sleep.
Oh well, maybe on their way back they might see one.
Anyway they were far more interested in finding out why the wombats were so grumpy today,
and they hurried on down toward the river, because not far from the river was 'Wombat Hollow'
and thats where they would be.
Just as they were approaching they could hear a few rumbles and grunts,
and they looked at each other and gave the 'thumbs up' sign.
Now Wombat Hollow was home to all the wombats in this particular part of the bush.
Each home had an entrance that was rather a large squarish hole,
that quite a big animal like a largish dog could get into,
and that was often the case.
And this was usually the real reason why the wombats were grumpy -
they were woken up by intruders!!!
However, when the children arrived they
very noisy wombats having a huge arguement.
The one on the left was Harry Wombat and the one on the right was Larry Wombat.
They had been friends ever since they could remember, and it was most unusual to see these two at loggerheads.
But there they were having an almighty free-for-all in front of the whole neighbourhood.
They were 'Grrrumping.... and humpfing....and hissssing....and snaarling'..... and occasionally a word you could understand.
They suddenly became aware that they had an audience, and slowly they quietened down.
That gave the children an opportunity to get a word in.
'G'day Harry, G'day Larry'
the children called out from a safe distance
knowing full well that when wombats were angry they could hurt you.
'Ummm, g'day kids' said Harry and Larry together.
'What are you doing here, you've picked a fine time to visit haven't you.'
'Can't you see we're busy.'
'Oh! yes, we can' said Liam, 'But what on earth are you so grumpy about?'
'Grumpy?, Grumpy?, Us? Never!!' said the two rather sheepishly.
'We're just discussing the new neighbours who've moved in, and are making us rather cramped.'
'Larry feels they've got a perfect right to live here, but I feel this place is not called 'Wombat Hollow' for nothing'
'There is plenty of room elswhere for them - so I say let them clear off!!!!!!!'
'But who are your new neighbours then' asked the children.
Well they didn't need an answer, Robert was the first to notice them,
and he called out
'Hey, look over there, the Echidna family are here!'
And sure enough there they were coming up from the bushes where they had no doubt found a lovely ant hill for their dinner.
There was Mr and Mrs Echidna and baby Bruce.
Really there was no need for all this fuss that Harry was making,
for the Echidna's were really lovely unassuming animals
who lived and let live.
It must have been on the wombats' minds too,
for at the same time the children were thinking this, the wombats gave a little sigh,
'Well, I suppose the Echidnas have every right to be here too.
And I guess its because you,' said Harry looking
at Larry 'Saying what you did, that I got mad at you!' 'I'm sorry everyone, but of course its okay for the Echidnas to stay'
It was just as well that Harry and Larry got that sorted out,
as they began to smell a funny smell, which wasn't quite right,
and which sent alarm bells ringing in their heads.
"'What's that funny smell' asked Robert, and before the other two could answer,
Mrs Echidna said 'I think someone has lit a fire and gone away, and not put it out'
And sure enough when the children turned around,
there was a fire burning away, crackle..... crackle.....crackle.... it went.
Now everybody in the bush knew that it wasn't the right thing to do to leave a fire burning,
because it ate everything up in its path and made it very uncomfortable for all the animals.
Quickly the children and all the animals around got to it to put the fire out.
The children ran down to the river and collected water in Robert's cart and brought it back and tipped it on the fire
while the animals dug and scratched and threw earth on the fire to cover it up so that it wouldn't burn.
After a while they had everything under control, and could sit back and catch their breath.
Wow! what a narow escape they thought, but alls well that ends well.
And they had certainly learnt a lesson here.
While this was all taking place time was marching on,
and the sun was beginning to lose its warmth, and it was beginning to get dark.
Also the children were starting to feel hungry and they hadn't brought a snack with them,
so they thought they had better make tracks home, as their Mummys and Daddys might wonder where they were!
As they were packing up to go home,
they said goodbye to all the animals,
Larry and Harry Wombat, and the Echidna Family,
and the lorikeets
who had kept them company on the way.
And as they turned to go home, they saw some kangaroos grazing, and waved to them, calling out
'We promise we'll come and play with you next time we come down to Wombat Hollow.'
The children hurried back up the track chatting away and remembering all the fun they had had.
Gosh it was so nice to have so many friends to play with.
And this was such a special place wasn't it, they told each other.
They got up to the top of the track in no time at all,
and they were bursting to tell their Mummys and Daddys
the Wombats and the Echidnas, and show the flowers that Joey Kangaroo picked, and the fire,
and..... and..... and..... so the list grew!
What a sight they were to behold, these three little children, excited, dirty, hungry, tired, and happy!!!!!!!!!