So Uncle Wiggily traveled on and on, and when it came night he didn’t have any place to sleep. But as it happened he met a kind old water snake, who had a nice house in an old pile of wood, and there the rabbit stayed until morning, when the water snake got him a nice breakfast of pond lilies, with crinkly eel-grass sauce on.
Pretty soon it was nearly noon that day, and Uncle Wiggily was about to sit down on a nice green mossy bank in the woods—not a toy bank with money in it, you understand, but a dirt-bank, with moss on it like a carpet. That’s where he was going to sit.
“I think I’ll eat my dinner,” said the old gentleman rabbit as he opened his valise, and just then he heard a voice in the woods singing. And this was the song:
“Oh dear! I’m
lost, I know I am,
I don’t know what to do.
I had a big red ribbon, and
I had one colored blue.
But now I haven’t got
Because a savage bear
Took both of them, and tied a string
Around my curly hair.
I wish I had a penny bright,
To buy a trolley car.
I’d ride home then, because, you see,
To walk it is too far.”
“I guess that’s some one in trouble, all right,” said Uncle Wiggily, as he cautiously peeped through the bushes. “Though, perhaps, it is a little wolf boy, or a fox.” But when he looked, whom should he see but little Jennie Chipmunk, and she was crying as hard as she could cry, so she couldn’t sing any more.
“Why, Jennie, what is the matter?” kindly asked Uncle Wiggily.
“Oh, I came out in the woods to gather acorns in a little basket for supper,” she said, “and I guess I must have come too far. The first thing I knew a big bear jumped out of the bushes at me, and he took off both my nice, new hair ribbons and put on this old string.”
And, sure enough, there was only just an old black shoestring on Jennie’s nice hair.
“Where is that bear?” asked Uncle Wiggily, quite savage like. “Just tell me where he is, and I’ll make him give you back those ribbons, and then I’ll show you the way home.”
“Oh, the bear ran off after he scared me,” said the little chipmunk girl. “Please don’t look for him, Uncle Wiggily, or he might eat you all up.”
“Pooh!” exclaimed the old gentleman rabbit. “I’m not afraid of a bear. I have traveled around a great deal of late, and I have had many adventures. It takes more than a bear to scare me!”
“Oh, it does; does it?” suddenly cried a growly-scowly voice, and, would you believe me? right out from the bushes jumped that savage bear! And he had Jennie’s blue ribbon tied on his left ear, and the red one tied on his right ear, and he looked too queer for anything. “I can’t scare you; eh?” he cried to the rabbit. “Well, I’m just going to eat you, and that chipmunk girl all up, and maybe that will scare you!”