Frolly the Frilled-Neck Lizard was always making mistakes. She was regularly getting into trouble for it, too. Once, during Frolly’s mother’s third attempt to teach her daughter how to move her body gracefully to make it to the end of a branch, Frolly slipped, sending her mother flying high into the air. Frolly watched from the branch below as her mother whizzed by overhead, landing safely in a soft patch of grass. There wasn’t much else to do except bob up and down on her new branch and wait for her mother to claw her way back to their pre-launch location.
“Oh, I worry about you, Frolly!” her mother said with tremendous concern once they were reunited. “How are you going to survive out there in the big wide world if you keep making these silly mistakes?”
Frolly wasn’t sure how to answer this question, but she set about trying to make her own life better. It didn’t work. One of the ways she tried to make less mistakes was by doing all of the things that a good lizard should do before starting their day. She had a large drink of water, did some exercises and stretches (much to the amusement of the nearby cockatoos) before eating a healthy breakfast of small, black ants. Little did she realise that the water she drank was the last of her mother‘s own store, that the exercises she did were meant for an elephant (explaining all of the peculiar mentions to peanuts and maintaining your grey skin) and that the black ants were, in fact, fleas. Instead of making her mother proud, Frolly watched on as her mother woke up to no water, some hysterical cockatoos and houses filled with angry fleas. So many mistakes and all before lunchtime.
One evening, Frolly decided that maybe she could help make her mother’s life better by packing up her things and moving to another burrow. But, luckily, she made a few mistakes along the way. Firstly, she had mistakenly left the door open on her way out, meaning that her mother knew very quickly that Frolly had gone somewhere. Secondly, Frolly forgot to take a map with her, meaning that her third mistake was to walk in circles around the forest and end up exactly where she had started: at her own house. Frolly’s mother was outside waiting for her when she returned and she appeared more cross than ever.
“What are you doing, Frolly?” her mother asked, shaking her head in disbelief. “You might have got yourself hurt!”
Frolly stared at the ground, not saying a word.
“You know I don’t believe in mistakes, Frolly, but you can prove me wrong by mistakenly thinking that I don’t care about you.”
Frolly unpacked her belongings (only noticing then that she had forgotten to pack her toothbrush) and went outside. “Now,” said Frolly’s mother, “unfortunately for both you and I, the tastiest ants are right at the tip of the highest branches. So, let’s start climbing.” Frolly smiled and eagerly followed her mother, neither of them realising until it was too late that they had jutst climbed to the top of the completely wrong tree.
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My name is Gregg Savage and, every night when the house is quiet, I write and publish a free children’s story at dailytales.com.au for you to share and enjoy.
Illustrations by Alisha Towers: FACEBOOK
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