David was five years old. He tried to be happy most of the time, but he was really feeling sad. He wanted to have a pet of his own. His brother Eric was ten and he had a dog named Daisy. His brother Karl was eight and he had a dog named Snoopy. But Daddy had said “No more dogs.” David was sad.
Daisy and Snoopy liked to chase little animals, and that meant David could not have a kitten or a bunny for a pet. Each day David would wish he had his very own pet. One day his family went to the Art Museum. David saw a wishing well. He reached in his pocket and took out one of his pennies. As he threw the penny in the well, he closed his eyes real tight and wished for a pet of his very own.
The very next morning David heard a funny noise outside his window. He opened his eyes and there was a funny looking animal peeking in his window. It was tapping on the window trying to wake David. David jumped out of bed and ran down the stairs and outside. He was so excited he forgot that he still had his pajamas on. As he ran around the corner of the house he saw a giraffe standing by his bedroom window.
Was this the pet he had wished for?
Everyone in the family was so excited. Even baby Mark squealed with excitement. The family was happy because the giraffe had made David so happy. David immediately gave the giraffe the name Georgie Giraffe.
Now every day David had a happy face. He and Georgie were good friends. Georgie liked to follow David. Sometimes David would climb to the top of Georgie’s neck and whisper secrets in his ear. David would sit on Georgie’s back and pretend he was riding a pony; sometimes he would pretend he was riding a camel across the sandy desert. Sometimes David would climb in the apple tree, and Georgie would let him slide down his long neck. Each time David slid down his neck he would let Georgie pick a nice red apple from the tree. Apples were a special treat for Georgie, and he soon learned to pick the very best one on the tree. Yes, Georgie and David became very good friends. They could play all day.
One day when the family was eating their dinner, Mother said “That animal has to go. Georgie is eating all the leaves off the top of the trees and all the apples from the apple tree. There will be no apples to make pies with if he keeps eating them.”
Daddy said Georgie was scaring all his pigs. “He chases them all over the pen. That has got to stop.”
Eric and Karl said Georgie was teasing Daisy and Snoopy, and that is why they barked all night. Little Markie cried. “That big monster keeps stepping on my toys and breaking them. I want him to go away.
David felt very sad. He ran out and climbed up on Georgie. He climbed until he was right next to Georgie’s ears. David whispered “I love you” in each ear.
One evening Daddy said, “I found a place for that giraffe. Tomorrow we must take him to the zoo. He gets into too much trouble around here.”
David’s eyes filled with tears. When he went out to see Georgie he saw the giraffe holding his head down and looking very sad. He had heard the family talking, and he knew he had to leave. He felt very sad because he really liked staying on the farm and having lots of places to run and to have a special friend like David.
That night when Georgie peeked in David’s window to say goodnight he had big tears in his eyes. He knew he must leave and return to his family at the Zoo. He whispered goodbye to David and started to go down the lane. He walked just a little way and he smelled something strange. Georgie was glad he had a long neck and could see far away. He saw something red coming from the chimney and black smoke coming from the windows. Georgie turned and started to run
back to the house. He was glad he had long legs so he could run faster. He had to save his family. When he got to David’s window he tapped on the glass. David woke up and smelled the smoke. He called to his mom and dad and ran to wake his brothers. One by one each member of the family crawled through the window and slid down Georgie’s long
￼neck to safety.
Soon the fire trucks came with their sirens on and their lights flashing. They hooked up their hoses and started to put out the fire. They were amazed when the family told them that Georgie had saved their lives. When the firemen left, the family all gathered around Georgie.
Daddy said, “Georgie, you saved my life and the lives of all my family. You are a part of the family, and I want you to stay.” Mother could only smile as she wrapped her arms around Georgie’s neck. Little Markie squealed with delight as he sat on the back of Georgie. Eric and Karl decided that perhaps they could teach Snoopy and Daisy to be friends to Georgie. David looked all around. He saw their home was all black, and he knew that most of his toys were burned. But that did not matter. He still had his family, and now he had a pet of his very own that the family loved—Georgie!
This article originally appeared in Roadrunner Extra!, the resident newsletter of Beatitudes Campus.