September 10, 2000


Julia was walking with her brother, her other brother, her mother, and her father. They were all together in the deepest forest valley beside a little laughing stream. They were spending the afternoon following a narrow trail to the top of a very high mountain-hill and would stop every now and again to float little leaf boats in the water. Once they found a field of plants covered in white fluffy parachute seeds. Mommy and Daddy called them thistledown but Julia and her brothers called them flying umbrellas and they had a lot of fun blowing them at each other.


Julia didn’t notice, but she was very soon covered all over her clothes with the flying umbrellas. Her brother blew some more seeds and wanting them to go very far he blew very hard. Since Julia stood close to him he blew her also and before she knew it she was flying away on the wind, carried up by the very many flying umbrellas that covered her. The funny thing was that she wasn’t scared at all, it was actually kind of fun to be sailing over everybody else. She called out a friendly “Good bye” to her family below, took hold of an especially large flying umbrella, and let the wind carry her all over the valley.


A short time after her adventure began Julia saw some birds flying towards her. She was afraid that they might fly too close to her and so she started waving at them to try to get them to fly far away from her. But as she waved she shook some of the flying umbrellas off of her clothing and soon she began to fall slowly toward the ground. One of the birds noticed she was sinking and flew close enough to catch her on its back. Julia held on to some feathers and asked the bird to fly over her family so she could say “Hi,” and that she was alright and having a lot of fun up there in the air. The bird did and Julia’s family waved up at her when they saw her on the bird’s back.


After saying good bye to her family the bird took Julia to its nest and when Julia got off the bird she noticed that she was small enough to sit in the nest just like a baby bird. But there were no bird babies in the nest, just some eggs lying in the sun. She sat on them and kept them warm for the bird while it went about looking for food to eat. Once it found an apple and brought it to the nest for Julia to eat. Julia thought it was quite a bit of fun sitting on some eggs in a nest way up high in a tree eating an apple and she enjoyed the noise of the wind as it danced through the branches below her.


Slowly the day moved on around Julia and before she knew it the sun was going down and the sky was starting to get dark. She worried that she would be in the nest all night and she didn’t like that because even though it was fun she had a bed at home that she liked very much and her mommy or daddy would always read her a story before she got into it and she didn’t think that they would find her up in a nest in a tree in the middle of the big forest. So the next time the bird came back Julia climbed on its back and it flew her to where her family was looking for her in the field of thistledown. They had flashlights in their hands and were calling her name and they were very happy when she came running to them along the path and telling them all about her adventure. Everyone hugged her and told her how much they had missed her when she was gone and then they all got into their van and went home. And before Julia and her brothers got into bed, their parents told them this story.


The End