Have Duck, Will Travel

There’s nothing quite as good as a sunny duck. Quack! Sunny duck. I should find Henrietta and tell her that one.

Henrietta? Where are you?

Henrietta?

Henr....whoa! What's this suitcase doing here? They better not be going somewhere without me.

Well I'll just take a look then.

They can't...urgh...very well...mmph...go without me...

After all, I'm a traveling duck! I'm gonna see the world!

Hey, it's empty. Maybe if I hide in there, they won't notice. Then I'll go wherever they're going!

Just a little more...

Ow.

Hey! I was just checking it out! No fair, I wanna go too!

I've gotta get in that suitcase. But I'm gonna need some help.

Henrietta can help. But, boy, she sure does sleep hard. I'll have to wake her up.

Hey. Psst. Henrietta. Hey.

Henrietta! Hey! Wake up! HEY! HENRIETTA!

Huh?

Hey. Are you awake?

Well I am now thanks to you. What?

Come with me. I need to show you something. We've got a BIG problem!

See that? That's a suitcase, and that means that they're going somewhere. And I don't know about you, but I don't like it! Nobody told me no one was going anywhere! I think they're going to leave us here and go without us! But I have a plan. If we disguise ourselves, we can hide in the suitcase and they won't know it's us!

Um, that's a really silly plan, Ducky. I say we just ask them. Then we can go back to sleep.

No way! It's so clever it's perfect! They'll have to take us! We'll be strangers! We'll call it "Operation Who's That Oh They're Strangers So I Guess They Have To Come Along"!

This is my super secret spy box! It has everything we need!

Now, where is everything? No. That's not what I want. No. Where is it?

There's one shoe. Where's the other? Oh, watch out for the soccer ball.

Why do you have a soccer ball in a super secret spy box?

Whoa! Ok, just ignore that thing. It's a little creepy.

OH! Here it is! Check this out! They'll never recognize me!

Tada! Really cool, right? Right? Henrietta?

Hey, why are you laughing?

Because you look silly! Here, give me that. Let me show you how it's done.

Just a little adjustment...

Kapow! Gorgeous! Is it me or do I look fabulous? It's me. I look fabulous. Give me those shades over there.

I may be the best looking hippo in the world. Just sayin'.

Look! I'm a Smarty Pants! Well, I don't have any pants, but you'd never know it was me!

All right, so now we look like Not Us, so all we have to do is hide in the suitcase and wait it out!

I still say this is a silly idea, even if I do look fabulous.

Don't worry. It makes perfect sense. Just have to...umph...get in there.

Almost there! Just about...hey!

Aw! No fair! How did you know it was me?

I told you it was a silly idea.

You know what? I think I have another idea. This one's sure to work. I just need to find Zach's keys.

Well, wake me when it does. I'm keeping the costume though.

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A Suhknowee Day

Suh-know.

“Suhnow”.  That’s how you say it.  Zach says you say it, like, ‘slow’, so I guess you’re supposed to say it slowly.  I do talk really fast a lot, so it makes sense, I guess.  He’s a smart guy and I do like him a lot.  YOU KNOW WHO ELSE I LIKE?

I LIKE MAGGIE!

Maggie is the bestest cat in the whole world!  She’s really silly, and likes to play–just like me!–and she’s super pretty!  Sometimes she lets me snuggle up with her to take naps.  And boy does she take a lot of naps!

Maggie doesn’t ever go outside, which she says is just fine with her, thank you.  I don’t know why she doesn’t like being outside.  She sure does spend a lot of time looking out the windows.  But she says it takes so much time to keep clean that there’s just no way she could go outside without losing sleep.  I guess she needs a lot of sleep.  As a duck, I only need 3 hours of sleep a day, so, boy, I think she sleeps as much as I am awake!

Quack!

Oops. Sorry.  I get a little carried away some times.

Speaking of being outside, I want to tell you about the suhknowee day that I had.  In case you don’t know, sometimes it gets so cold outside that when it rains–which apparently is does waaaaaay up in the sky–the water will freeze and will kris…crista…crystallize!  That’s it!  (Boy, spell check sure does help a duck out!)  That means it turns into ice.  And when it does that, the little icicles will fall to the ground as suhknow.  If enough of it falls, then it sticks to the ground and gets all crunchy to walk in.  I hear that some places get so much suhknow that it would completely cover me.  WOW!  I don’t know if I want to have that happen!  I can’t fly yet.  I don’t know how I would ever get out of that!

Well, guess what?  We had a suhknowee day not too long ago!  I know!  Neato, huh?

Look at all the suhnow!

I know I’m just a little duck, and I sure haven’t done too much in my life, but that was the most fun ever!  There was so much suhknow that my legs were all covered when I walked.  And boy how was it cold!  But it sure is super fun to play in.  You can roll it into balls and make a suhknowman, which is like a person made of suhknow, only it isn’t a person that is alive.  They kind of just sit there and make the same face all day long, and they have sticks for arms and weird black eyes.  Actually, I didn’t go near any of the suhknowmen.  They were kind of scary.

Oh, my. He really is a scary suhknowman.

But the rest of the suhknow was really, really pretty.  Don’t tell Maggie, but I think it was at least as pretty as she is.  Shh!  She’s very sensitive about how pretty she is.  I think that’s why she doesn’t like to go outside.  It would make everything else less pretty.

Well, anyway, you can do all sorts of fun things in suhknow.  Like making snow angels, for example.  It’s really easy.

The first thing you do is find a nice bit of snow to lie down in.  I KNOW!  In the snow?  It really is cold, but this is a lot of fun, so, like Zach says, “A lot of the really fun things in life aren’t free.”  It doesn’t really cost any money to lie int he snow, but I guess it sort of costs you being cold to have fun making a suhknow angel!  It’s totally worth it!

So, anyway, this is how you make a suhknow angel.  First, spread your arms and legs out wide, like this:

It really is very cold! Brrrrrrr!

The next thing you do is the fun part.  You just flap your arms and legs up and down and back forth for a few seconds.  The suhknow will get all over you, but just keep going.  After that, you have to stand up, which isn’t as easy as you might think.  Suhknow if very, very slippery.  Zach tried to help me, but I wanted to do it myself, like a big duck.  It sure wasn’t easy.  I fell down three times!

Ha! Quack! I'm all suhknowee!

After you get up, you can look down and see your suhknow angel!  Look at mine!

Ducky Thomas is suhknow angel! GET IT?

The only problem with suhknow is that it doesn’t stay on the ground long enough.  You know how ice cubes melt when you take them out of the freezer?  That’s what snow does.  It just melts and then everything is all mushy and wet, and I have to agree with Maggie.  It just isn’t fun then.  You get so dirty and have to spend so much time cleaning that it just isn’t fun at all.  Golly though, I sure wish suhknow stayed around longer.  You know why?  Because I get to spend ALL DAY with my family!  Zach, and Katie, and Maggie, and Henrietta, and my newest friend Chester the Bee (I’ll show you picture of him later, he’s super duper cool!).  We’re all home!  All day!  And then when it’s late, and I’m soooooo tired from playing in the suhknow, I get to snuggle up with Maggie and take a nap!

She's SO FLUFFY!

Boy.  Suhknowee days are just the best!

 

Ducky Thomas Goes to Richmond

I’ve never gone on a trip before.  For that matter, I’ve never gone anywhere before.  Before this weekend, I had only been out of the bedroom, where I stay, just once to sit on Zach’s desk.  He said he wanted to take my picture, which was okay with me, but ducks aren’t much on make-up, and don’t often pose for pictures, so I was a bit nervous about it all.  And that was just for a picture!  Imagine how I felt when he asked me if I wanted to go to Richmond! ‘Golly!’ I had exclaimed.  ‘I don’t even know what a Richmond is, but I sure do want to see it!’  So, sure enough, he told me I could go, and went to something called, ‘Target’–which I believe is not far away, but must be a magical place, seeing as how he returned quickly with a wonderful black traveling house with wheels for me to ride in.  Who knew there were such things in the world!  It had plenty of room for me to rest comfortably, and I was able to keep all of Zach’s belongings safe during the trip–though I do have to admit that the darkness made me sleepy, and aside from some bumpy moments, I slept quite a lot.  Fortunately, no one tried to open the house, and before I knew it, Zach was opening the door and I opened my sleepy eyes to see something amazing!  It was a brand new place, much bigger than the bedroom I’m usually in!  And, it had a really big window that let me see one of the most amazing sights I have ever seen!  Ever ever!

This is what a Richmond looks like!
There were lots of what Zach called, ‘outtomobeels.’ That’s the rolling things over there!
Whoa. Richmond.

Well, boy, was I excited!  I just sat in that window ALL day long!  And when it got dark, everything got all sprinkled in little lights everywhere.  It sure was incredible!  Zach was gone most of the time, where he said he was spending time with the Righter people, who like to talk about the Righter things.  Apparently, Zach knows something of this Righting, because he was very excited about all that he had done while he was there.  He was almost as excited as I was about seeing the Richmond all day!  Well, anyway, he told me that he sat on a panel about religion, which does sound kind of unpleasant, and maybe a little painful, but he didn’t seem to be bothered by it at all, so I guess it’s not that bad.  I listened as he talked about his adventures that day, and then the next day too.  He spent an awful lot of time with the Righters, where they talked about the Right way to do things, I suppose.  It’s good that people try to be Right, I’ve been told, so it’s even better that they have conferences to discuss it.  Zach said that the people there liked him so much that they bought all of the books that were for sale!  Yay for Zach!  He said that there were more panels that he sat on (I still don’t know why he sat on them, but, I’m just a duck, and will not understand, I guess).  There was one on Fan Tah See, which is, according to Zach, about make-believe stuff that is in stories, and sometimes has dragons, magic, and shallow vampire characters that only little girls like.  And then there was the one on Die A Log, which is a funny name to me.  I mean, from what I could tell from my perch over the Richmond, it seems to me that logs–which I know from a television show that I watched with Zach, come from trees–are very pretty, and very helpful to things.  I can’t imagine why anyone would want to kill one.  But Zach made it sound kind of delightful, and said that the Righter people asked a lot of really neat questions about Die A Log that he, and two other Righters by the names of David L. Robbins, and Lauren Oliver, answered.  I don’t know them, but they sound neat!

Well, he just seemed to really enjoy his time, which was wonderful to hear, because I was beginning to worry that I might be having too much fun looking at the Richmond–more fun than Zach–and that made me feel bad.  I didn’t want Zach to miss out on the fun, either.  He did sit with me for a while watching the sun rise one morning, which was really neat!  I had never seen that before either!  I was glad he got to see it too, though he had to leave before I could tell him that.  But I think he already knew.  So, I guess that was pretty much it, after that.  Zach said he met lots of new people, and that there was something funny about something he said the Righters called a, ‘humanzee.’  I don’t know what that is, but as I’ve said, I’m a duck, and I don’t really know too much about things. Zach told me, as he was putting me back in the black, boxy house, with wheels that he hoped that he could keep in contact with his new friends, and that some of them were really nice, and pretty good Righters that needed to simply believe in themselves a bit more.  I liked the way that sounded, and so I just smiled at Zach, closed my eyes, and fell asleep.  The next thing I knew, we were home again.

I don’t have to stay in the bedroom anymore.  Now I get to spend time on Zach’s desk while he does his Righting.  It makes me happy. But not as happy as knowing that Zach has promised to take me to other new places too!  I can’t wait!

A Festival of Falling Ducks

Hi everybody!  It’s hard to believe that it’s been two weeks since I wrote about going to the Richmond, but golly, time sure has, as Zach likes to say, ‘flown by.’  He says that some day I’ll be able to fly as fast as time, but I just don’t know.  So far I can only fly off the bed, and I don’t make it very far.  Most times, I just kind of fall.  But I’m pretty sure that the last time I tried, I fell a lot slower!  Maybe it won’t be too long now, and I’ll just be zooming all over the place!

Ha ha, Quack!

Sorry, I got a little carried away.

Well, anyway, I may not be able to fly just yet, but I have been very busy making new friends, and also going to something Zach called a, “Fall Festavil,” which I thought would be a very good place for a duck trying to learn how to fly to go to.  It was in a great big park, with trees, and grass, and a playground too (but only the Big Ducks get to play there, Zach said, which made me sad, but I guess someday I’ll be a Big Duck, and then I can play all day long!), but not really too many places where a duck could learn to fly.  It appeared, though, that by the time we got there, most of the people had already fallen, because they were all sitting on the grass listening to music.  I don’t know what the music was, but I’m pretty sure it made everyone feel better about falling, because they all seemed pretty happy.

Oh! But I forgot to tell you the super duper best part! I got to go with my new friend, Henrietta!  She’s a hippo, a really fun, and neat hippo, and pretty much my best friend in the whole wide world!

Henrietta and I got to ride together to the park. She sure is a silly hippo!

At first I wanted her to go, but I couldn’t find her anywhere, and I got really upset.  But then, wouldn’t you know?  That silly little hippo had asked Zach to hide her in our traveling bag as a really neat surprise, and I was so excited when I got there that I quacked for about five minutes! Boy was that embarrassing!

We didn’t go to the park right away, and had to wait in the car while Zach, and his friend Katie (boy she sure is quite pretty, but I’m too shy to tell her!), went to an ATM, I think, where he says all the money is kept, which I don’t know…it seemed kind of small.  I guess money isn’t that big.  Well, while we were waiting, Henrietta kept telling me that it would be really funny if I drove us away while Zach and Katie were gone, which seemed a little crazy to me, but she kept giggling so much that I started giggling too, and then, before I knew it, I had crawled out the bag and was pretending to drive! And let me tell you, it’s a lot harder to do than I thought!

 

VROOM VROOM!
I don’t know what this thing is, but it sometimes makes the car bounce.

I couldn’t make the car go, but, honest as I can be, I didn’t want to.  I like making Henrietta laugh, and boy did she, but I was more than ready to get back in the traveling bag and get the park, so I could fall with everyone.  And, sure enough, we arrived just a few minutes later–though I guess it could have been longer, I don’t know.  Henrietta snorted when I got back in the bag, because she said I made a really funny face, and then I quacked for so long that I don’t really know how much time passed.  But it was so funny!

Well, as I said before, everyone had already fallen when we got there, and I didn’t see any other people falling, although there were some children playing with sticks, and one of them seemed to be really curious to me.  I mean, I know I’m just a duck, but he sure danced silly with that stick.  Zach said he looked like a Jedi with parking son’s disease.  I don’t know what that is, but, as I said, I don’t know how to drive.

Anyway, the boy went away, and just in time too!  Zach and Katie had food, and Henrietta and I got to try some!  The first thing we tried was a hamburger, but I think it wasn’t made too good, because it didn’t taste like ham at all.

It tasted like ketchup.

But the really best thing we tried, that was so super good, I thought I really was going to fly.  It was called a funner cake, and even though it didn’t look much like a cake at all, it sure was fun!  It had some kind of white, powdery stuff on it–I think that was the funner part!–that made my head feel all happy, and caused Henrietta to snort for three straight minutes!  I thought my beak was gonna explode from quacking so hard!

IT WAS SOOO GOOD!

After a while,  it was time to go, which was okay with Henrietta and me because we were ready for a nap.  And even though Henrietta and I aren’t Big enough to go to the playground, we did get to sit together on a bench for a little bit, and watch the other kids.  I tell you, it sure looks like a lot of fun.

Henrietta is a super neat hippo.

It sure was a lot of fun, but boy was I tired.  I was really happy that Henrietta got to go too, and that I got to eat some yummy food, and even though I didn’t fall at the park, I sure did when I got home!

This was the best fall I’ve ever had!