By courtesy of James Waldroup

Once upon a time a little boy named Omar Canelo lived with his Nanny in an enchanted forest in their little house next to a stream.


Everyday Omar played by the stream looking for shiny rocks and other pretty things that he placed in a leather pouch that he had found floating in the stream.

Most of the time, Omar played by himself. At other times, he seemed to play with several other children that only he could see. He ran in and out of the clump of trees that grew near the edge of the stream, then around the big rock near the stream as if he was trying to catch someone. He ran and dodged and turned and shouted like he was trying to keep away from his invisible friends.

When Omar came in for lunch, he went first to his room and placed the shiny stones and things he had collected in a shoe box that he hid in his closet. During lunch, Omar and his family sat at the big wooden table that his grandfather made many years ago. The chairs seemed so high, it was almost like climbing a tree to get onto the chair to eat lunch.

Omar’s family did not have much. Their lunch consisted of a piece of bread, a slice of cheese, and a glass of cool milk fresh out of the spring cooler. This is where the milk was placed after his Nanny milked their only cow. Omar named the cow Ferdinand after a bull he saw on a poster during one of the family’s trips to the small town. They did not go to town very often. It was seven and one half miles away as the stream flows.

Before starting to eat lunch, Omar broke off three bits of bread and three bits of cheese and put them in the leather pouch. He put the pouch in his pocket. His Nanny thought this was a little strange, but Nanny was used to many of the strange things that Omar did. Omar’s Nanny had asked him what he did with the bread and cheese. Omar simply answered "I have to take lunch to my friends."

After lunch Omar raced from the house like he was shot from a cannon. He ran to the edge of the stream and jumped upon the big rock. He took out his handkerchief and spread it neatly on the top of the rock. Omar removed the leather pouch from his pocket and placed the bread and cheese on the handkerchief. A piece of bread, a piece of cheese, a piece of bread, a piece of cheese, a piece of bread, a piece of cheese. He sat quietly for a while to give his friends time to eat their lunch. After his friend finished, he folded the handkerchief neatly, placed it in his pouch, then he was off running and playing again.

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