Uncle Wiggily Helps Alice

One day the postman bird flew down out of the sky and stopped in front of the Wibblewobble duck house. Uncle Wiggily Longears, the old gentleman rabbit, was out in front, cleaning some mud off his auto, for he had run it very fast into a puddle of water the day he saved Jimmie off the pony’s back.

“Does anybody named Alice Wibblewobble live here?” asked the postman bird as he looked in his bag of letters.

“Yes, Alice lives here,” said Uncle Wiggily.

“And does Lulu Wibblewobble?”

“Yes, of course.”

“And Jimmie, too?”

“Certainly,” said the old gentleman rabbit.

“Then this is the right house,” said the postman bird as he blew his whistle, like a canary, “and here is a letter for each of them.”

So he handed Uncle Wiggily three letters and then he flew up into the air again, as fast as he could go, to deliver the rest of the mail.

“Hum! I wonder who can be writing to Lulu and Alice and Jimmie?” said Uncle Wiggily, as he looked at the letters. “Well, I’ll take them in the house. They look to me like party invitations; and I wonder why I didn’t get one? But I suppose the young folks don’t want an old rheumatic uncle around any more. Ah, well, I’m getting old—getting old,” and he went slowly into the house, feeling a bit sad.

“Here are some letters for you, children,” he called to Lulu and Alice and Jimmie. “The bird postman just brought them.”

“Oh, fine!” cried the children, and they opened them all at once with their strong yellow bills.

“Goodie!” cried Lulu as she read hers. “Jennie Chipmunk is going to have a party, and I’m invited.”

“So am I,” cried Alice.

“And I,” added Jimmie.

“I thought they were party invitations,” said Uncle Wiggily, sort of sad and thoughtful-like. “When is it?”

“To-night,” said Lulu.

“Then we must hurry and get ready,” said Alice. “I must iron out some of my hair ribbons so they will be nice and fresh.”

“Oh, that’s just like you girls,” cried Jimmie. “You have to primp and fuss. I can be ready in no time, just by washing my face.”

“Oh!” cried Lulu and Alice together. “Make him put on a clean collar, anyhow, mamma.”

“Yes, I’ll do that,” agreed Jimmie.

Well, pretty soon they were all getting ready to go to the party, and Uncle Wiggily went back to finish cleaning his auto and he was wishing he could go. But you just wait and see what happens.

Pretty soon it became night and then it was time for the party. Lulu and Jimmie were all ready, but it took Alice such a long time to get her hair fixed the way she wanted it, and to get just the kind of hair ribbon that suited her, that she wasn’t ready. You see, she had so many kinds of hair ribbons and she kept them all in a box, and really she didn’t know just which one to take. First she picked out a red one, and she didn’t like that, and then she picked out a blue one, and she didn’t like that, and then she picked up a pink one, and then a green, and then a brown, and finally a skilligimink colored one, but none suited her.

“Hurry, Alice,” called Lulu, “or you’ll be late.”

“Oh, you can go on ahead and I’ll catch up to you and Jimmie,” said Alice, trying another hair ribbon.

“All right,” they answered, and they started off. Mr. and Mrs. Wibblewobble had gone across the street to pay a little visit to Mr. and Mrs. Duckling, and so Uncle Wiggily and Alice were all alone in the house.

“You had better hurry, Alice,” said the old gentleman rabbit as he was reading the evening paper.

“Oh, I don’t know what to do!” she cried. “I can’t decide which hair ribbon to wear.”

“Wear them all,” called Uncle Wiggily with a laugh, but, of course, Alice couldn’t do that, and she was in despair, which means that she didn’t know what to do.

She laid all the ribbons back in the box, and she was just going to shut her eyes, and pick out the first one she could reach, and wear that whether she liked it or not, for she didn’t want to be late to the party. And then, all of a sudden, in through the open window of her room the old skillery-scalery alligator put his long nose and he cried:

“Hair ribbons! I must have hair ribbons! Give me hair ribbons!”

And then what do you think he did? Why, he grabbed up the whole box full of Alice’s lovely hair ribbons, and before she could say “scootum-scattum,” if she had wanted to, that skillery-scalery alligator ran away with them in his mouth, taking his double-jointed tail with him.

“Oh!” cried Alice. “Oh! Oh!” and she almost lost her breath, she was so surprised.

“What is it?” cried Uncle Wiggily, running up to her room.

“The alligator! He has taken my hair ribbons. Quick, run after him, dear Uncle Wiggily!”

“I will!” exclaimed the brave old gentleman rabbit and out of the house he hurried, but the ‘gator with the double-jointed tail had completely gone, and the rabbit gentleman couldn’t catch him.

“Oh, what ever shall I do?” cried Alice, when Uncle Wiggily came back. “I have no hair ribbon, and I can’t go to the party!”

Well, Uncle Wiggily thought for a moment. He didn’t tell Alice that she should have hurried more and worn a pink ribbon, and then the accident wouldn’t have happened. No, he didn’t say anything like that; but he said:

“I can help you, Alice. Down in the yard is some long grass, green, with white stripes in it. They call it ribbon grass. I will get some for a hair ribbon for you.”

“Oh, thank you, so much!” said Alice. So Uncle Wiggily quickly went down, pulled some of the ribbon grass and helped Alice tie it in her feathers. And she looked too cute for anything, really she did.

“Now, quick, run and catch up to Jimmie and Lulu, and go to the party and have a good time,” said Uncle Wiggily, and Alice did. And what do you think? A little while after that up to the duck-house drove Sammie Littletail in a pony cart.

“Oh, Uncle Wiggily!” cried Sammie, “Jennie Chipmunk was so flustrated about her party that she forgot to send you an invitation. But she wants you very much, so I’ve come to take you to it. Come along with me!”

Then Uncle Wiggily was very glad, for he liked parties as much as you do, and he jumped into the cart with Sammie and they went to the party and had a lovely time. And the next day Uncle Wiggily went out in his auto, and he made the alligator give back all of Alice’s hair ribbons, and none of them was lost or soiled the least bit, I’m glad to say.

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