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Whimsical Bedtime Stories for Children of All Ages

Do Unto Otters...

On a beautiful lake named Lake Golden, fed by an ice capped mountain nearby, were three otters that included a sister and two brothers. Wanda was the girl otter. She had an older brother named William, and a younger brother named Wally. They loved playing together, jumping on each other and swimming on their backs across the lake.

The lake was a quiet, peaceful and delightful place, as its residents neither held resentments nor knew rejection.

It was a place where friends were free to be themselves. Honor and respect for one another were a natural part of the community.

New to the area were a young boy named Ollie and his parents Mr. and Mrs. Oswald. They had just moved into a beautiful Victorian style house that sat only a stone’s throw from the lake.

This house had a large porch with a panoramic view of the lake.

The property was a rare find as it was secluded, well maintained and included a large parcel of land.

Ollie's parents were older and his brothers and sisters were already grown and living on their own.

Ollie was often without someone to play with, as he lived many miles from his nearest neighbor. But, sometimes Ollie's parents would go to town so Ollie could play in the park there.

Ollie looked forward to going to the park because usually lots of other children were there. Ollie didn't have many friends and often he would play tricks and make fun of other children to get them to notice him.

After playing with Ollie for a short time the other children wouldn’t want to continue because he would always make fun and play tricks. No matter who Ollie played with he would soon find himself alone.

Ollie thought the other children were unfriendly and unfair for not playing with him.

One day, when Ollie was down by the lake, he saw the three otters playing together in the water and having a blissful time.

But to Ollie this was not a cheerful sight.

Instead it made him feel sorry for himself.

Soon his self pity turned to anger because he didn't have a friend to play with while other children did.

Seeing the otters having so much fun led Ollie to lose his temper. He picked up a rock and angrily threw it at them.

The rock hit one of the otters directly in the eye.

There was a high pitched cry and the otters scurried off.

Days went by while Ollie moped around and continued to feel sorry for himself. Then, one chilly day he went down by the lake and wandered around to the other side where there was an old abandoned dock.

The dock extended out over the water quite far and it had many boards missing from the walkway; others were rotted.

Ollie walked out on to the dock, not realizing the hazard.

Each time he saw a rotten board he would jump up and down trying to break it. Ollie thought it was fun. As he neared the end of the dock he jumped up and down again and the dock broke apart.

Through the rotted opening and into in the water fell Ollie, breaking his arm.

The fall was painful and it hurt Ollie, but angels must have been on his shoulders that day, because the part of the dock he broke was just large enough to become his life raft.
But, Ollie was too injured to move and too far away from his parents for them to hear his yell. Ollie was all alone and he started to cry.

After a while Wally, the younger otter, swam by and saw Ollie floating on the broken dock.

Wanting to play, Wally pushed Ollie's life raft farther into the water.

Now Ollie began to worry that he would never get to shore and cried even more.

Hours went by, and now Ollie was getting very cold and could hardly hang on any longer.

His cries were reduced to murmurs and sputters and as he was losing all hope, the older otter William swam up from behind and began to push the raft towards the shore.

Ollie was more encouraged the closer he got, until he finally reached the shore and was able to stand.

Ollie was grateful and as he stood up he turned to look at the otter that helped him.

He noticed that it only had one eye.

William just stared back at Ollie and then he swam off.

Then Ollie remembered what he had done to William and felt ashamed of himself.

Ollie learned the meaning of "The Golden Rule" that day;

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." (Luke 6:31)

He began to realize that by treating others the same way he'd like to be treated himself, he could try to regain the trust of the Otters and he might also begin to earn the friendship of the other children in his town.

The End

"Do Unto Otters" by John Anicello - Copyright 2011 - All Rights Reserved

Interim Illustrations Courtesy of Bedtime-Story

About the Author:

John Anicello is Director of Regulatory Affairs for a hazardous materials manufacturer and distributor. He has 31 years experience and is 57 years old. He does technical writing for his employer, but he finds storytelling and the task of getting the grammar correct a greater challenge. He hopes you liked his story.

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