The Frozen Elevator

Red happy squirrel - image courtesy of His name was Duster. He was a small, red-headed squirrel that always enjoyed the life in the forest and the life of quietness. Until one day when his life was changed by a dramatic event I wish it didn't happen.

Duster was picking sticks to build his winter time elevator, which could help him get from inside of a tree hole to his little house up on a tall tree, in the not so thick forest, near the blue-like river running through the forest, very close to the tree. His main interest was to finish the job in time and finish it before the cold came in and froze his activity for the next months ahead. He was not very sure either he needed to consult with the other animals in the forest if his plans were complete or not. He enjoyed being and doing things by himself and himself alone. That action was very costly for him.

While he was gathering the sticks, making the levers for the elevator, something reminded him that the his food provision for the next months was not very well prepared, so he switched from constructing his cozy elevator to gathering food for the winter.

In a few hours the snow started to fall and Duster was still running up and down the branches of the other trees, with nuts in his arms, trying to fit as much as he could in the little hole of the tree he selected to be his winter barn.

Then the winter came. It caught Duster unprepared. He had more nuts and his elevator was already stuck with all the provisions he brought in. A sudden noise made him stop for a minute or two; he then became aware of the fact he was being such a fool for messing up the two different things he started and completed none. He went at the bottom of the tree and the door to his elevator was stuck from inside. He pushed it to get it open, but with no success. Then he found some stones to use with other sticks in trying to crack open the door to finish his elevator mechanism.

The winter was settling in; still Duster had no worry. He was more concerned about his elevator now. The river near the tree, where he was doing his project, was becoming colder and colder as time was passing.

In a few hours of complete turmoil for Duster the door of his elevator opened and, one by one, his nuts formed an inside avalanche, inside the tree core, and they came down the aisle prepared for his elevator, hit Duster to the ground, and they all went into the freezing river.

Duster's entire plan was ruined now. There was no friend to help him and who could stand now to fish out of the river his almost frozen nuts? It took Duster some time to realize that his winter provision was gone now and his elevator was totally ruined. He could only think now of how to spend the rest of the winter - with no food, no more luxury and a lot of wasted energy.

If he would only have some friend to tell him to do one job at a time and complete it, maybe then he would have the elevator completed and the food stored in the right place. If he would only had someone to write him the plan of the storage and separate it from the plan of the elevator, probably then he would have had not just food for the winter, but also the company of another friend and winter would have passed so fast.

The only regrets that Duster had were his nuts. He was standing in front of the cold river and was counting how many were already soaked, half frozen and good for nothing now. A pecker saw him and offered to repair his storage and make him a place for the winter. Duster was just quiet. He didn't know what friendship meant... and he didn't know how to respond to the pecker... so the pecker left him.

It was all ruined now. Duster went inside the tree hole and started weeping and weeping. Then he fell asleep, while he bewailed his loss, and the cold winter came in and froze every piece of the land by the side of the river. The snow covered the entrance of the tree and soon Duster passed away.

There were no birds now to sing or sound his death; he had no funeral, nobody to cry for him. His food provision and Duster himself were both forgotten into the white, deep snow that covered the entrance of the tree. There was no sign there to tell anyone it was Duster's property, tree and storage. The tree himself became his casket and the snow became the blanket that covered him...

NOTE: This is my very first fiction article I wrote on an assignment for Associated Content, later taken by Yahoo Voices, that is shutting down this year (2014) unfortunately. I wrote this article in April 8, 2010.

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