Charles Lee McCabe
Bobo was just a little ostrich chick when his first Christmas passed, so he didn't know what to make of all the lights, playing, singing and excitement. He stuck close to his mother and thought that the people on the other side of the fence seemed to have the greatest time, and that nothing this grand could ever happen again. He didn't realize that this was a tradition that was carried out once a year, for as long as anyone could remember. You see, Bobo didn't live on just any farm; he lived on a very special farm that a certain jolly old elf ran.
During the year following that first Christmas, Bobo learned quite a few things. He learned that he would quickly grow to be much taller than the workers that he had watched play and sing, that he could be as faster than the fastest reindeer, and that there were all manner of creature on this farm. He spent most of his time playing with badgers, ducks, koalas, llamas, penguins, and of course reindeer.
However, even though he was an ostrich, and the only one with wings, he couldn't fly. Oh how he envied the reindeer because even when they were very small, they were able to fly. He wasn't about to give up trying to fly, though, and he would spend a little of each day trying to figure out the secret to flight. He would watch the reindeer and practice everything that he could see them do. He would run as fast as they did; he would jump into the air at the same time that they did; yet he always fell back to the ground when they would keep going up. He was very sad.
Everything that he did that year had to do with flying. On Valentine's Day, he gave out cards that were folded into paper planes. On Easter, he would glue wings on his Easter eggs and try to get them to fly. Unfortunately, they had as much luck as he did, and his mother made him clean up the resulting mess. On Halloween, Bobo even dressed up as a reindeer, but that didn't help him get any higher in the air when he practiced flying before he went trick-or-treating.
Bobo had a hard year, but things started looking up for him when, on the 23rd of December, one of the elves came out to the animals, told them that they could make lists of what they wanted, and the elves would give the lists to Santa. All of the animals were so excited about this that they quickly ran to where the elves were passing out the paper and pencils. This turned out to be a bad idea. In the rush to get to the elves, a couple of the animals didn't look where they were going and one of them accidently stepped on Timothy the Turtle, hurting his foot. After the elf inspected the foot and said that it wasn't broken, Timothy still had a limp that made him move even slower than he already did. Bobo saw this, and felt really bad for Timothy, even though Bobo himself had not been anywhere near the accident.
Bobo decided that he would not be asking for the one thing that he had been wishing for all year. He would not ask for the ability to fly. He did ask for Timothy's foot to be better. He knew that Timothy really liked to play with the other animals, but some of the other animals gave him a bit of a hard time about being slow. Bobo knew that this limp would only make it worse, so he felt that giving away his wish was the right thing to do. So when he wrote this down and gave it to the elf, he noticed that the elf read his words and smiled. This made Bobo happy and he went to play with his friends wearing a big smile.
It was Christmas morning and all of the animals awoke to presents of all different sizes beside their beds. That was, all the animals except Bobo. He didn't even notice that he was the only one without a present because he was too busy watching Timothy walking around without even the slightest limp. He was so happy that Santa had been able to make that Christmas wish come true, that he didn't notice when everyone went quiet and looked towards Bobo. He didn't notice the silence until it was broken by a very merry laugh that was full of joy. At the sound of this laugh, Bobo jumped into the air, spun, and came down face to face with Santa himself!
Santa told Bobo that he was the only animal that had asked for something for someone else, and that it was a very noble thing to do. Santa also said that he had been watching Bobo try to fly for the past year, and that he had all of the moves right, but he was missing a very important piece of the puzzle. After saying this, Santa reached out and put a green elves hat on Bobo, as well as a green scarf around his neck. Santa said that with these items, he would finally be able to fly, but only on Christmas! Bobo didn't know what to say, so he just hugged Santa then ran over to Timothy. All of the animals were watching very closely as Bobo finished talking, then placed Timothy on Bobo's back, and took off at a quick run. To the delight of everyone present, including Santa, Bobo and Timothy rose into the air and quickly began to fly all around the farm! No matter how high they went, you could hear their laughter clearly.
After many hours of flying, Bobo and Timothy were both tired so they decided to land. After they landed, Bobo placed Timothy back on the ground, and walked to where Santa was still watching. Bobo took off the hat and the scarf and carefully handed them back to Santa, who said that Bobo could have them back next Christmas, so he better keep himself in flying shape. Bobo said that he wouldn't miss a single day of practice, and that he would make Santa proud! And he always did!