Hibbou, the owlet, was playing with her sticks when her cousin Hoot hopped beside her and started pecking on her shoulders.
“What are you doing? Can I help?”Hoot asked repeatedly.
“I don’t need your help!” Hibbou said as she flapped her tiny wings to shoo Hoot away.
Mother Chouette clicked her beak and shook her head. “Hibbou, Hoot, have you ever heard of the story of Mr. Monkey and Tilly, the Tree Turtle? Come here beside me and listen.” Hibbou and Hoot plopped beside the mother owl.
Mr. Monkey and the Tree Turtle
Once upon a time, there was a monkey who got separated from its tribe and accidentally stumbled upon an island full of banana trees. The monkey’s eyes became as huge as ostrich eggs as it jumped from one tree to another and discovered that each tree was bursting with fruit. Finally, it brought down the fattest bunch it could get and started popping banana after banana.
While stuffing its face, it noticed a small turtle approaching it.
“Hi Mr. Monkey, those bananas look great. Would you mind giving me one? I am so hungry,” the turtle smacked its lips.
The monkey laughed at the turtle. “How strange you look, with leaves sprouting from your shell. Who are you?”
“I’m Tilly, and I’m a tree turtle. I can help give you food, if you help me pick them from the trees.”
“Who says I need help? You’re too short anyway,” The monkey mocked the turtle. “All I need is to swing along these trees to feed myself.”
“Everybody needs help sometimes,” Tilly the turtle said,” even someone like you.”
“Like I said little guy, scram!” the monkey turned its back on the turtle.
“Well, if your sure…” the tree turtle whistled. “Let’s go guys! Mr. Monkey doesn’t need us. Maybe we’ll find someone else willing to help!”
And the ground shook as hundreds of tree turtles stood up, each one carrying a banana plant on its back. They swam to the nearby shore, leaving the island bare.
Mr. Monkey’s jaw dropped to the ground as it realized what it had lost.
Hibbou turned to Hoot and grabbed his wings. “C’mon Hoot, let’s build my stick tower together!”