Jonathan Calf was bored. He was tired of waiting. He stamped his foot impatiently. He shook his head so the big bell around his neck rang. He swished his tail so it hit each side of his stall.
“Stamp! Clang! Wham!” said his hoof and bell and tail.
Mama Cow mooed from her corner of the barn.
“Now, Jonathan, behave yourself! Farmer Jones needs to look after ALL his animals and you must wait your turn.”
“Don’t wanna wait,” mooed Jonathan Calf. “Wanna go outside and play, NOW!” And he kicked his hoof—THUMP!
“Moo-OW! That hurt!” he whined.
“I’m sorry you hurt yourself," said Mama Cow sadly, “but that’s what happens sometimes when you’re angry! Why don’t you go back to sleep?”
Jonathan Calf rubbed his sore foot in the straw and listened hard to see if he could hear Farmer Jones whistling. That meant he was coming to the barn. But all he heard was a rooster crowing and a kitty meowing as she chased a mouse. He let out a sigh and closed his eyes to think up an adventure.
“I know!” he thought. “After Farmer Jones gets us, I’ll hop on the wagon behind his tractor when he isn’t looking! Then I can find out where he goes everyday!”
“V-room!” The tractor started, and while Farmer Jones was busy, Jonathan Calf jumped into the wagon. It started to shake over the rough ground and poor Jonathan kept slipping.
“Bumpity-bump!” the wagon wheels rode over rocks and ruts, bouncing and jerking. All of a sudden, there was a loud screech as Farmer Jones stepped on the brakes and turned off the motor.
Jonathan Calf staggered for a few steps, feeling dizzy from the drive. Farmer Jones got down and walked ahead, still not seeing the calf.
“Baa-aaa”, sounded a voice. “Baa-baa-baaa!”
Jonathan peeked out--and saw lots of sheep! Some were black, some were white, some were big and some were small. Jonathan was afraid to get out of the wagon in case he stepped on them!
“Shoo, now, shoo!” said someone close by. A boy with a stick was pushing his way through the sheep.
“Hi, my name in Hans! I am in charge of all these sheep! You can come down now”, he waved as he hurried away with the sheep following him.
As Jonathan climbed down from the wagon, he spied some yellow dandelions.
“Ummm! Those look good enough to eat,” he thought. He ran over and stuck out his tongue to lick one, like a lollipop. “Scrumptious!” he thought, and he ate up all he could find.
“I’m VERY thirsty,” he exclaimed and thought about all the water back at the barn. Jonathan Calf’s tummy started to make funny noises and he didn’t feel so good. Then he saw Farmer Jones running toward the tractor. In his arms were two cute, teeny-tiny little lambs lying still and quiet.
“They look sick, poor things!” thought Jonathan Calf. He could see that Farmer Jones was worried when he brought them to the wagon and tucked blankets around them.
“Hey, Jonathan Calf, why are you here?” Noticing Jonathan’s yellow face, Farmer Jones rubbed his hand across his whiskers, puzzled. “What have you gotten into, fella?” he asked. Then he saw the empty dandelion stems and understood what Jonathan Calf had been doing.
“Thirsty, boy?” he asked, and Jonathan gave out a long, DRY “Moooo-ooo!”
‘Well, we’ve got to get these baby ewes home real quick and then you can have a long drink of cold water!”
Jonathan Cow was ashamed that he had gotten into trouble. He knew his Mama must be worrying about him the way Farmer Jones was worried about the lamb babies.
“She might think I runned away”, thought Jonathan. He closed his eyes and two, big tears rolled off his chin.
“V-rum”, hummed the tractor, as Farmer Jones drove them all back to the barn. They went slower this time so the baby lambs would be safe and Jonathan Calf stood firmly on his four hooves without sliding.
All of a sudden, Jonathan Calf woke up! Farmer Jones was whistling a song coming up the path to the barn. Jonathan waited patiently until it was his turn to leave the barn for the day. Maybe Farmer Jones was taking care of baby lambs when he was late to let the cows out of the barn.
“Slurrr-p!” And Jonathan Calf was SO thirsty he lapped up all the water in his pail!
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