The Early Onset of Winter

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The Early Onset of Winter

One morning, the little squirrel named Timmy was awakened in his cozy hiding place. He was asleep when suddenly a tiny snowflake landed on the tip of his nose.

Timmy shook his bushy fur, blinked his dark beady eyes at the sky, and thought, “If the first snow is falling now, then it will be winter soon.”

The squirrel walked through the forest and called out, “Friends, winter is coming soon. I saw a snowflake today!” But none of the other forest dwellers answered. All his friends were still asleep and would not be alarmed.

“All right, I’ll go by myself,” Timmy decided bravely. He grabbed his basket, strapped it around his back, and headed for a meadow with lots of nut trees.

The path to the meadow was long, and with each step, it got colder and windier. “This can’t be happening,” Timmy thought. “Why is winter coming so early this year? I haven’t collected anything yet, and once the snow gets here, I’ll find fewer nuts.”

After the long hike to the meadow, he diligently dug and dug under the big trees. Every now and then, he would find a dropped nut or a buried acorn from last year. He carefully placed his spoils in the basket.

When the basket was half full, it began to get dark, and Timmy decided to find a place to sleep. He found an abandoned nest in one of the nut trees and snuggled in. “Tomorrow, the search for nuts will continue,” he thought to himself.

When the little squirrel woke up the next day, he saw a thick blanket of snow on the meadow. “Oh NO! Winter is here!” Timmy nimbly climbed down from the tree and began to reach the ground with his paws through the solid blanket of snow. The search for nuts was arduous. It was bitterly cold and Timmy only found a few edible things.

Just as he was putting the nuts he had collected into his basket, a little mouse came trudging through the snow. Little ice crystals stuck to its whiskers. 

“Hello, Timmy. I see you started collecting in time and have already found many nuts. I slept through the onset of winter and now have nothing to eat.” 

Timmy saw that the little mouse was cold and that it must be hungry. “All right, little mouse. I can give you some nuts.” The little mouse thanked him and went back into the forest with the nuts.

Shortly after, a little hedgehog came and said, “Hello, Timmy. It’s terribly cold, isn’t it? I didn’t expect the rapid onset of winter at all. Before I go into hibernation, I have to eat something. Unfortunately, I haven’t found anything in the snow.” 

Timmy knew the hedgehog and didn’t want him to go hungry. “I can give you some earthworms.” The hedgehog thanked him and went back to his burrow.

Just as Timmy was about to continue collecting, a little rabbit hobbled by. “Hello, dear squirrel. I see you found lots of nuts. I hurt my paw and can’t collect any more now.” 

Timmy took pity on the rabbit. “Your paw must be hurting a lot. I can give you some nuts, maybe it will help.” The rabbit thanked him and limped on.

It was getting dark, and one thick snowflake after another fell gently on his fur. Sometimes he shook himself because it got too cold. Then behind a tree, he saw a little bird. “Hello little bird, what are you doing? Shouldn’t you be sitting in the tree or flying around?”

The bird replied, “You’re right. I’m rarely down here on the ground, but I need to find something to eat. Winter came so suddenly.”

Timmy looked into his basket. There were only two nuts left in it. “Bird, I have only two nuts left. But I can give you one of them.” The bird thanked him and flew away with the nut in his beak.

Timmy looked into the almost empty basket. “One nut – I won’t get through the winter with that!” But he now had to make his way home, for it had become too cold and dark for gathering.

Winter was getting icier with each passing day. The trees bore a thick blanket of snow on their branches. Timmy was worried and sat down on a large stone by the side of the path.

Just then, the little mouse came by. “Hello, Timmy. You look sad. What’s wrong?” Timmy explained to the little mouse that he had shared all his nuts with the others and now had nothing himself.

The little mouse remembered how the squirrel shared his nuts and said, “I managed to find some cheese and some grains. I’ll be glad to give you some.” The mouse shared its supplies and said goodbye.

“Hello, squirrel,” a bird chirped from the tree. “Here, I have an earthworm for you.” The little bird flew down to the ground and gave Timmy the worm. He hastily gobbled down the worm and thanked the little bird.

Some time later, the limping rabbit and hedgehog also came by and said, “We met the little mouse today. The mouse told us that you shared all your supplies and are now hungry yourself.”

“I can give you some of my milk that I got from the farm,” said the hedgehog. The rabbit showed him an apple and shared it with Timmy. “We’ll all keep looking for supplies, and we can show you a place where you’ll find lots of nuts.”

“There is enough food for all of us on the way to the human settlement,” reported the hedgehog. 

“Thank you, I will be very happy to come with you.” The little squirrel arranged to meet the hedgehog and the rabbit. They were going to meet at sunrise the next morning.

The little squirrel was grateful for the help of the other animals and was now no longer afraid of winter. He snuggled into his nest and looked forward to the next day’s joint search for supplies.

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