Aunt Betty’s Cranes
Abigail and Noah were as excited as they could be. They were going on a trip to Florida to see Aunt Betty and Uncle Tommy, some of their favorite people. The two children packed their bags with cool summer clothes, not forgetting their swim suits and goggles. The beach was calling them!
They ran to the car as fast as their happy bodies would take them. Noah, being older and faster, was the first to the car. Abigail was close behind. Noah threw open the door and jumped in, almost knocking Abigail down. “Sorry!” he said as he slid into the most comfortable seat. He could hardly wait until he got to Aunt Betty’s house. But the trip was long and the children began to get tired and grumpy. Abigail wanted the water first. Noah wanted to watch his movie first. Abigail was uncomfortable and stretched her body over into Noah’s seat. Yes, it was going to be a very long trip.
The car finally pulled into Uncle Tommy and Aunt Betty’s house. Noah crawled across Abigail and almost fell out in his excitement to see them. He hugged them and ran into the house, picking out the bed he wanted to sleep in. “Wow! This bed is right by the window where I can see the golf course,” he said to himself. He set down his suitcase and went outside.
“Abigail, come here!” Noah called. “You won’t believe these big birds! I’ve never seen anything like this before. “Aunt Betty walked outside and explained to them that they were Sand Hill Cranes, and they had been coming to her house for many years. Each morning she put out food for them, and if she didn’t, they would peck on her window, letting her know that they were hungry.
The two children sat outside and watched the cranes most of the day. When it was time to eat, the male crane stood guard a few feet away and allowed the female to eat her meal in peace. Afterward, the female stepped aside and stood guard while the male ate his food. They seemed to always be looking out for one another, and Mr. Crane always showed thoughtfulness to Mrs. Crane. What a gentleman he was! After a full day of eating and playing at Aunt Betty’s house, the two cranes walked to one end of the golf course, flapped their wings, and flew off straight down the golf course to their nests. What a day it had been! Noah and Abigail were tired and hungry and they went inside to eat their dinner.
Noah ran to the sink and washed his hands, in a big hurry to get to the meal line. As he pushed his way ahead of Abigail, he was reminded of the thoughtful crane and how he always allowed the female to go first. “Here, Abigail, get in line ahead of me. I want you to go first. It seems that I have been so excited to be here that I have forgotten that a gentleman always thinks about the needs of a lady first. I am so happy that we came to Uncle Tommy and Aunt Betty’s house. I have learned an important lesson from the Sand hill Cranes. They keep the Golden Rule: ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.’ I’m sorry that I have been thinking of myself so much. Please, tonight I want you to take the bed that is by the window.”