F all the people who lived and worked in the meadow by the
river, there was not one who gave so much thought to other
people's business as a certain
Truly his cares were light. To be sure, he ate much, but then, with nearly sixty teeth for nibbling and a wonderful long tongue for sucking, he could eat a great deal in a very short time. And as for sleeping—well, sleeping was as easy for him as for anyone else.
However it was, he saw nearly everything that happened, and
thought it over in his queer little
This particular Fly, like all other Flies, was very fond of
the sunshine and kept closely at home in dark or wet
weather. He had no house, but stayed in a certain elder bush
on cloudy days and called that his home. He had spent all of
one stormy day there, hanging on the under side of a leaf,
with nothing to do but think. Of course, his head was down
and his feet
were up, but
He thought so much that day, that when the next morning dawned sunshiny and clear, he had any number of things to tell people, and he started out at once.
First he went to the Tree Frog. "What do you suppose," said
he, "that the
For an answer to this the Tree Frog ran out his tongue, and, sure enough, it was fastened at the front end. "The Snake is quite right," he said pleasantly, "and my tongue suits me perfectly. It is just what I need for the kind of food I eat, and the best of all is that it never makes mischief between friends."
After that, the Fly could say nothing more there, so he flew away in his noisiest manner to find the Grasshopper who lost the race. "It was a shame," said the Fly to him, "that the judges did not give the race to you. The idea of that little green Measuring Worm coming in here, almost a stranger, and making so much trouble! I would have him driven out of the meadow, if I were you."
"Oh, that is all right," answered the Grasshopper, who was really a good fellow at heart; "I was very foolish about that race for a time, but the Measuring Worm and I are firm friends now. Are we not?" And he turned to a leaf just back of him, and there, peeping around the edge, was the Measuring Worm himself.
The Blue-bottle Fly left in a hurry, for where people were
"I came," he said, "to find out if it were true, as the meadow people say, that you were all dreadfully frightened when the Cow came?"
The Crickets answered never a word, but they looked at each other and began asking him questions.
"Is it true," said one, "that you do nothing but eat and sleep?"
"Is it true," said another, "that your eyes are used most of the time for seeing other people's faults?"
"And is it true," said another, "that with all the fuss you make, you do little but mischief?"
The Blue-bottle Fly answered nothing, but started at once for
his home in the elder bush, and they say that his