The Cactus and the Armadillo
By Megan E. Welton
It was Nelson the Cactus’s birthday and all he wanted ever wanted was a friend to share his birthday with. They would sing songs and play games and eat cake and it would be a great time for everyone.
But since Nelson was a cactus, it meant that he was prickly and none of the desert creatures would ever play with him because they were afraid of getting stuck with one of his thorns.
All day he waited patiently for someone to wander near him.
“Spot!” Nelson cried as he spotted the prairie dog. “Spot, it’s my birthday! Come play some games!”
But Spot the prairie dog just wagged his head and went on his way.
“Jack!” Nelson cried as he saw the jack rabbit bounding by. “Jack it’s my birthday! Come and have some cake!”
But Jack the jack rabbit just bounded by without noticing Nelson at all.
Next Nelson spotted Kingsly the King Snake, and didn’t say anything at all. Everyone knows that it’s a foolish thing to invite Kinglsy the King Snake to their birthday party.
“Well then,” Nelson said to himself. “I don’t need others to have fun on my birthday. I will have a party all by myself. And just wait. Everyone will see what a fun time I’m having with my songs and games and cake that they’ll all want to come join in.”
But as Nelson sang, there was no one to sing with him, and a round isn’t much fun with one person.
And as Nelson played games, there was no one to play games with him, and Stick the Cactus with the Needle isn’t much fun with one person.
And as Nelson ate his cake, there was no one to eat with him, and blowing out candles isn’t much fun when there’s no one else to say, “Make a wish!”
Just as Nelson was beginning to give up on his birthday and promising that he would never have a birthday party ever again, Amy the Armadillo came creeping up to Nelson’s hill.
“Nelson!” Amy cried. “Nelson! I’m so sorry I’m late to your party!”
Amy the Armadillo had a hard tough shell, and she didn’t mind Nelson’s thorns.
So the two of them sang and played and ate.
And Nelson had the best birthday ever.