“Animals marching two by two,” sang Midge as she and Booker-T strolled along the sidewalk.. “Sing with me Booker-T.”
“Oh no,” said Booker-T. “You don't want to hear me sing. I'm terrible.”
“Why?” asked Midge. “You can't be worse than I am.”
“I'm very bad,” said Booker-T. “I sound like a really sick animal about to kick the bucket. If I start singing, people would think an air raid just went off in the neighborhood. I'm really bad.”
“Try” said Midge. “I want to hear you. It will be okay.”
“Animals marching two by two,” sang Booker-T.
Suddenly they heard some dogs in the neighborhood howling very loudly.
“See there,” said Booker-T. “I am so bad that it makes the dogs howl. My singing must really hurt their ears.”
“How do you know they are howling because of your singing?” asked Midge. “I hear the dogs howl every time there is a police or ambulance siren going off.”
“Did you hear them howling before I started singing?” asked Booker-T. “I didn't hear a siren going off anywhere.”
“That doesn't mean anything,” said Midge. “I didn't think you sounded that bad.”
“You are just being nice,” said Booker-T. “Because you are my friend. They didn't howl when you were singing.”
“Maybe they didn't hear me,” said Midge. “And maybe you need a different song to sing.”
“Why would I need a different song?” asked Booker-T.
“Do you remember when you sang Happy Birthday to me?” asked Midge. “You sounded good with that song.”
“I remember,” said Booker-T. “I didn't think I was all that good.”
“I didn't hear anyone howling when you sang that song,” said Midge.
“I guess maybe you are right,” said Booker-T as he and Midge walked through the gate at Jake's house.
“Hi Jake,” greeted Midge.
“Hi guys,” said Jake. “What is Midge right about this time?”
“She was singing something when we were walking over here,” said Booker-T. “And she wanted me to sing too. When I started to sing, the dogs in the neighborhood stated howling.”
“But why was Midge right if she asked you to sing if all the dogs were going to bark?” asked Jake.
“Remember when I sang Happy Birthday to Midge?” asked Booker-T.
“I remember,” said Jake.
“They didn't howl when he sang the Happy Birthday song, said Midge.
“Okay,” said Jake. 'I am not sure I understand what you are right about yet.”
“No one howled when he sang it,” said Midge. “But this morning they howled at the song he was singing. The song he sang this morning just isn't his type of song. He needs to sing a different kind of tune. Something more suited to his voice.”
“Oh,” said Jake. “Now I get it. She is right Booker-T. You just need a song that is good for your voice type. I'm not good at singing any type of song, but I do like to sing so I try sometimes.”
“Jake really can't sing anything,” laughed Midge. “He does try but he has trouble caring any kind of a tune.”
“Okay guys,” said Jake. “Are we going to see what animals are at the little zoo facility today?”
“Yes,” said Booker-T. “No more singing. Lets go see the animals.”
The three hurried along the sidewalk to the zoo and peeked through the door to see if any humans were inside. A couple of people were inside and in a few minutes, they exited the building. The friends carefully entered the building and stood looking around the room.
“Wow,” said Midge. “Look over there guys. It is a Koala bear. He is sure cute.”
“And next to him is a Panda bear,” said Jake.
“I like the Panda bears,” said Booker-T. “They are really pretty with their black and white colors. They look so cuddly don't you think? But my all time favorite animal is the tiger. They are same colors as me.”
“I like the zebras,” said Midge. “They look like horses. What is your favorite animal Jake?”
“Hmmm, let me think,” said Jake. I think I like the elephants the best of all. They are so big and strong but yet they are gentle animals.”
“It is hard to pick a favorite one,” said Midge. “When they all are really great in different ways, like we are.”
“Yes” said Jake. “I think so too. The elephant is big and strong. The lion is majestic like a king. The cheetahs are very fast runners. The Pandas are cute and cuddly and the Giraffes are so tall.”
“I think we can find something good about the all,” said Midge.
“There are some ore meerkats, Midge,” said Booker-T. “Over there.”
“I see them,” smiled Midge. “I wonder how Duke and his family are doing in the big zoo.”
“If we can get on the train,” said Jake. “We can see if he is still there.”
“Maybe we can try it soon,” said Midge. “I want to see the big zoo.”
“Me too,” said Booker-T.
“Look over there Midge,” said Jake. “Isn't that animal beautiful?”
“Oh yes,” said Midge. “He is so cute.”
“I think that is a baby polar bear,” said Jake.
“He is so cute,” said Booker-T.
“Look back in the corner where the Hippo was,” said Jake. “Baby otters.”
“They are so little,” said Midge. “Lets go see them.”
The three walked to the back and watched the otters swimming on their backs in the water.
“Hi,” said Midge.
They stopped swimming and sat up along the edge of the water. “Did you say hi to us?” asked the one little otter.”
“Yes,” said Midge. “My name is Midge. This is Jake and Booker-T.”
“I'm Sissy and this is my brother Peanut,” said Sissy. “Why aren't you in one of the cages?”
“We aren't zoo animals,” said Jake.
“Oh,” said Peanut. “You are different kind of animals?”
“Yes,” said Booker-T. “We are house animals and live with a human owner.”
“Oh, nice,” said Sissy. “Think we can come live with you in your house?”
“I don't think so,” said Midge. “Zoo animals have to live at the zoo. You are called zoo animals.”
“Oh,” said Peanut. “We miss our mommy.”
“Where is your mommy?” asked Jake.
“She is back at the big zoo where we used to be,” said Sissy. “I think we are going to another big zoo now that we are bigger.”
“I think you will like the big zoo where you are going,” said Midge. “There are a lot of animals there. We hope you will like your new home.”
“Thanks,” said Peanut.
“We have to go now,” said Midge. “We will try and come to see you at your new home if we can get there.”
“Okay,” said Sissy. “Good-bye.”
The three exited the building and started for home. They always enjoyed their visits to the little zoo.