One day, while hanging clothes on the line, something fell on her head. “The sky is falling,” she cried. “I must go warn the others.”
Into the house she trotted. “The sky is falling,” she cried.
“Actually that’s just rain,” they all said.
She set down her basket of clothes.
“All right then. Rain calls for pie. I’m going to make a pie and then we will eat it.”
She mixed up the dough and patted it and rolled out the crust.
She peeled the apples. She sliced the apples. She nibbled on the apple cores.
She mixed in the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, flour and raisins and poured the mixture into the crust.
She mixed up flour, sugar and butter for crumbs and sprinkled them on top.
Into the oven it went. It filled the house with a delicious appley-cinnamon aroma.
When the pie was done she asked, “Who will help me eat my pie?”
“I will,” said the boy.
“I will,” said the girl.
“I will” said the grandmother.
“I will,” said the grandfather.
“But you didn’t help me make the pie,” she said.
“You didn’t ask for help,” they all answered.
“You’re right!” she replied. “Let’s eat.”
They all ate pie and the sky didn’t fall, but it did continue to rain.
Later she realized she had confused the stories of Henny Penny and the Little Red Hen.
This led her to wax nostalgically about the stray black and white hen that wandered around their yard in South Otselic when she was a child. She doubted that anyone, anywhere ever had a stray hen, but she did. No one knew where it came from or who it belonged to. She called it Chicky, because she wasn’t a particularly original little girl. She fed it chicken feed from Agway and it laid eggs in the barn. It was a very nice chicken.
She vowed to one day move to Tennessee or North Carolina, to a house with built-in bookshelves where she could put her copy of The Stinky Cheese Man, raise a pet chicken and perhaps grow some pumpkins.