SLOWPOKE and SPEEDY
Speedy McCallester was a funny little character, dressed in a blue shirt and his favorite red pants with the tiny black suspenders that held them up. His baseball cap with the initials S M sat on his head, right between his long, flip, floppy ears.
Today was picture day. Speedy was looking clean and sharp as he looked at himself in the mirror. He was indeed a fine looking rabbit.
Speedy grabbed a carrot and headed out the door, munching on his breakfast as he hopped up the street.
Chester Turtle was also coming down the sidewalk, moving slow as molasses; heading toward Animal Town's elementary school, just a few blocks away.
"Hey Slow poke," yelled Speedy, "you better get a move on. School will be over before you even get there." he said, with a laugh, "Is your shell too heavy for you to carry?" he teased.
"I'm not worried," replied Chester, in a low, deep, dragging voice. He spoke as if he didn't have a care, or worry in the world.
"I'll race you there," said Speedy, with confidence, knowing that he would win with his fast hopping rabbit legs.
"No thanks," mumbled Chester, "I have other things to do this morning before going to school. Besides; I think you are in too big a rush pal."
"Ha ha!" Laughed Speedy, "you are just afraid to race me, because you know I will win."
"I'm not afraid," said Chester, "it's just that......
"It's just what?" said Speedy.
"Never mind," said Chester, "what will I get when I win this race?"
"You can have my red cap," said Speedy smiling.
"Well then, the race is on," said Chester.
"Yes, if you win, you can wear my cap when we have our picture taken." said Speedy.
"And when you loose, you will have to wear my shell on your back, when we have our picture taken." replied Chester.
Speedy gave a hardy laugh. "This is going to be an easy race to win," he said out loud. He watched as Chester headed across the street, moving slow as ever. "He must know a short cut," thought Speedy. "I don't need a short cut to beat Mr. Slowpoke."
Just then it started to rain. Big drops of water fell on top of Speedy's head.
"Oh no! My cap is going to get wet. I must go back home and get my umbrella," said Speedy. He took another look at Chester, he was almost across the street. "I can go back home, and still beat him," Speedy said as he raced back up the street toward his house.
Speedy hippity hopped up the steps to his front door. He stopped long enough to take another look at how far Chester was, before entering his house. This time the turtle was turning the corner and going out of sight. Speedy watched him disappear on the other side of Miss Goosey's dress shop.
Speedy raced into the house, and began pulling out things in the hall closet. He looked for his rain coat and umbrella. They were not there. He hopped upstairs to his bedroom, and began looking through his closet, but still he couldn't find them. When he decided to look under his bed, it was there that he found what he was looking for.
"This is what I get for not putting things away, where they belong," he said.
Speedy raced back down the steps.
"Oh good, there you are," said his mother as she stopped him, before he got to the door. "you need to take the trash out, before you go out."
"But Mom, I gotta go," he insisted.
"Not before you empty the trash," his mother answered, "you know the rules, trash out everyday, then you go out to play," she reminded him.
Speedy pouted as he grabbed the trash can and went out the back door to the alley.
"Now I am on my way, for picture day." he said, and I bet I'm still gonna beat old slow poke Chester."
He hippity hopped as fast as he could, all the way to Animal Town's school. He couldn't wait to see his friends, and tell them about the race.
But when he got to school he was in for a big surprise. He did not see any of his friends; Robert Squirrel, Billy Raccoon, not even Ralph Chipmunk. He looked at his watch, it was five minutes before eight O clock.
"Boy, I beat everybody to school this morning, I could have won Robert's marbles, Billy's baseball cards, and Ralph's whistle," he said, as he tried to turn the handle to the door. But the big door was locked. "Oh my goodness, even the teacher is late this morning."
Speedy sat down on the front step, and waited in the rain, but he was not getting wet because he still had his umbrella.
Some time had passed, and when Speedy looked at his watch again, it was eight thirty. He could not understand why no one was at school. No other animals and no teacher.
"Well at least I won the race," he said, "Slow poke Chester isn't here either, he barely makes it to school at eight o clock anyway."
Speedy continued to sit on the steps of the empty school, until he got bored. He didn't understand why no one was there on a Monday morning, and on picture day too. Everyone always loved posing before the camera. He got up to leave, and started hopping back home, with a worried look on his face. Surprisingly, he ran into Chester again, going in the opposite direction of the school.
"Hey, Slow poke, school is this way."
"I know what direction the school is in," replied Chester slowly. "If I was going to school today, I would be heading in that direction."
"Well, why aren't you going? I just left there, and no one is there, I been at school since five minutes before eight."
Chester began to laugh, a slow, dragging, deep
"Ha ha ha hee hee hee, since when do you go to school on a Sunday morning?" laughed Chester.
Speedy was flabbergasted, " I thought today was Monday, Picture day."
"Oops!" said Chester, with a turtle kind of grin.
" I guess I didn't win the race, since it's not Monday." Speedy sighed.
"You wouldn't have won anyway," said Chester.
"Would too!" said Speedy, "You have never heard of a turtle out running a rabbit," Speedy argued.
" Well," said Chester, "the test will be tomorrow, see you on the front steps at eight o clock, and bring your cap, I want to wear it when I get my picture taken."
"Fat chance!" said Speedy.
The two animal characters went their separate ways.
The next morning, Speedy woke up early, and got ready for picture day, and the race to school to beat Chester. He was laughing out loud when he left his house, and didn't see Chester nowhere insight.
"He hasn't even left his house yet," laughed Speedy, "and he thinks he is going to beat me, silly turtle!" he said.
Speedy took his time hopping to school, he even stopped to pick some pretty purple flowers for his teacher.
"I'll just be sitting on the steps, when Slow poke comes," he said with a laugh, but when he got to the school, the first animal he saw was Chester.
Speedy couldn't believe it, and Chester sat there with a proud turtle grin on his face.
"I won!" said Chester with pride, "I was here first."
"How did you do it?" asked Speedy
"I camped out on the playground. You see my friend, I can take my house wherever I go. So I just moved closer to the school.It took me all night long to move here, but I did it, and it's eight o clock. So I won."
Speedy handed his favorite red cap over to Chester.
"I guess you'll be taking your picture in this," Speedy said sadly.
"Oops," said Chester as he put Speedy's cap on his head. "I guess you just have a big head, because this hat is too big for me."
Speedy laughed at the sight of Chester in his too big hat.
"Well, instead of taking a picture with my cap on, why not take a picture with me?" Speedy suggested.
Chester like that idea; so that's exactly what they did, and if you ever get a chance to look in Animal Town's picture day book, you will be sure to see Slowpoke and Speedy smiling proudly on picture day.