Uncle Wiggily In A Boat

When Uncle Wiggily got to the edge of the yellow golden-colored field after jumping off the raft, as I told you in the story before this one, the old gentleman rabbit rubbed his eyes, and then rubbed them again, for he wasn’t quite sure of what he saw.

“Why!” he exclaimed, as he put on his spectacles in order to see better. “I have made quite a mistake. This isn’t a field of gold at all, it is only a field of golden rod, which is a flower.”

“Ah, if it is golden rod, perhaps if you wait long enough it will turn into chunks of gold,” said a little voice down on the ground, and, glancing there, Uncle Wiggily saw a little ant with a tiny loaf of bread on her back. “Why don’t you wait for that to happen, Mr. Rabbit?” she asked.

“Oh, it would never happen,” said Uncle Wiggily. “This golden rod is a flower, and it will always remain a flower. I am disappointed once more about finding my fortune. I thought when I saw this shining yellow color from my raft, after I got away from the rat, that I had found the gold for which I am looking. But, never mind, this flower is very pretty,” and he picked a bunch of it and smelled of it.

And some of the yellow dust of the posy-blossom got up the rabbit’s twinkling nose, and he sneezed so hard that his glasses fell off. But the ant kindly picked them up for the old gentleman though he had to reach over to take them from her, as she was so small that she hardly came up to the rabbit’s knee.

“Well, I must get home to my little ones,” said the ant with a loaf of bread. “I hope you have good luck, Uncle Wiggily.”

“Thank you very kindly,” spoke the rabbit, and then he put a golden rod flower in his button-hole and hopped on to look for his fortune.

Pretty soon, not so very long, in a little while, the rabbit came to a nice smooth rock which was long and slanting, just like a hill down which you slide on your sleds in the winter time. Only, of course, there was no snow or ice now, as it was summer.

“Ha! Now if I was a little younger, and didn’t have the rheumatism, I’d slide down that rock!” exclaimed the rabbit. “I wish Sammie and Susie Littletail were here, for they would enjoy this very much. And so would Johnnie and Billie Bushytail, the squirrel brothers, not to mention the puppy dogs.”

Then the rabbit looked at the nice, smooth rocky slide, and all of a sudden he heard a voice singing:

“Lumps of pudding and pieces of pie

My mamma gave me when I was a boy,

And for those things I used to cry–

For lumps of pudding and pieces of pie!”

“Hum! I wonder who that can be?” asked Uncle Wiggily, and then he heard some one laugh and shout, and a great big boy, about as big as two barrels of molasses, burst out of the bushes.

“Why, it’s the giant’s little boy!” exclaimed Uncle Wiggily in great surprise.

“Yes, that’s who I am!” cried the boy who was as large as two barrels of molasses, and a can of condensed milk besides. “How are you, Uncle Wiggily? Have you found your fortune yet?”

“No,” said the rabbit a bit sadly, “I have not.”

“Never mind,” spoke the giant’s little boy, “come on and have a slide, it’s lots of fun,” and with that the big boy threw himself down on the smooth rock, just as if he were on a sled, and away he whizzed down the hill as nicely as a cake of soft soap slips into the bathtub.

“I believe I will try it!” exclaimed the old rabbit gentleman, so, taking a firm hold of his crutch and valise he sat down on the smooth rock, and away he whizzed down after the boy who was as big as two barrels of sweet molasses and an ice-cream cone also.

Faster and faster went the rabbit, and faster and faster went the giant’s little boy, until, all of a sudden, the boy slipped off the stone and landed in a big pile of hay, and wasn’t hurt at all.

“I wonder if that’s what will happen to me?” thought Uncle Wiggily, and he was just looking to see where he would land, and he was hoping it would be in a feather bed, when, as quickly as you can catch an alligator, if ever there’s one to catch, the old gentleman rabbit slid off the rock, and down he came, plump on top of a big toadstool, and he wasn’t hurt a bit; only sort of jounced up and down like.

“My! That was a fine slide,” he said. Then he looked up and he saw that he was right on the shore of a little lake, and close at hand was a rowboat with oars in, and on the boat was a sign which read:


“Ha! That is very polite of some one,” said the rabbit. “I believe I will take a ride in the boat. And perhaps I may find my fortune in it.”

Then he looked more carefully, and he saw that there was a box in the boat, and on the box was a sign which read:


“Hum! Perhaps there is gold in there. But I won’t open it to see until some one tells me I may,” thought the rabbit.

So he got into the boat, and he stuck the oars through the oarlocks, which are places made for them, then he dipped the wide part of the oar into the water and pulled on the handle part and, my land sakes, flopsy-dub! Uncle Wiggily was rowing as nicely as you please.

Well, he rowed on and on, until he was out in the middle of the lake, and then, all of a sudden, he heard a funny noise inside the box. It was a sort of scratching, growling noise, and before the rabbit could do anything, the top of the box flew open and out stepped a little black bear. Oh, but Uncle Wiggily was frightened!

“Ah, ha! Now I have you, just where I want you, Mr. Rabbit,” said the bear. “This is the last of you. Burr-r-r-r!”

Well, Uncle Wiggily was so frightened that he didn’t know what to do, for he surely thought his end had come. Then he happened to remember that he had some cherry pie in his valise, and he knew that bears are very fond of sweet stuff.

“I know what I’ll do,” thought the rabbit. “I’ll give the bear some pie, and when he isn’t looking I’ll row toward shore, and perhaps I can get away from him.” So he quickly opened his satchel, took out the pie and gave it to the bear most politely.

“Ha! this is very good,” said the bear in a grillery, growlery voice, as he took the pie. “I will eat this first and afterward I’ll attend to your case!”

And when the bear was eating the pie, and licking the sweet, red juice off his clawy paws, Uncle Wiggily rowed toward shore. But he wasn’t yet quite near enough to jump out of the boat, so he gave the bear another piece of pie and rowed a little closer to shore.

The bear was so interested in eating the cherries from the pie, and sucking the juice off his paws, that he never noticed what was going on. But finally he glanced up, and when he saw how near the shore the rabbit had rowed the boat the bear cried:

“Ah! ha! So that’s your trick, eh? Well, I’ll scratch you, anyhow.”

And with that he made a spring for the rabbit, but Uncle Wiggily was too quick for him. Grabbing up his crutch and valise, the rabbit jumped out of the boat and landed on shore, and then the wind suddenly sprang up and blew the boat and bear in it out into the middle of the lake, and Uncle Wiggily was safe, I’m glad to say, for the bear couldn’t swim to shore that day on account of having no bathing suit.

Then, hopping on, Uncle Wiggily looked all over for his fortune. But he did not find it right away. And he had another adventure soon.

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