But! gracious me! Central gave Little Jack Rabbit the wrong number, for as he stood in the Hollow Stump Telephone Booth, with the receiver to his ear, he heard Grandpa Possum say:
“I don’t care how hard it snows,
Nor how Old Mr. North Wind blows,
For I’m as safe as safe can be
In a big warm hole in the old nut tree.”
“Ha, ha!” laughed the little rabbit, hopping out of the booth, just as Grandpa Possum poked his head out of his hollow tree house, “you certainly look sleepy. What made you wake up?”
“What woke me?” asked the possum gentleman angrily. “Why, those good for nothing Squirrel Brothers threw a snowball into my window.” And then Grandpa Possum shook the snow out of his left ear and looked around to find those naughty squirrels.
All of a sudden, quicker than a wink, another snowball hit the old hollow tree a tre-men-dous whack.
“Goodness me!” said Grandpa Possum, “if I ever catch those pesky squirrels I’ll make them wince, yes, I will, as sure as I’m twenty-one!”
And he began to grin, for Grandpa Possum is full of good nature and never can stay angry very long.
“If you’re good natured, every one
Will love you more and more,
So don’t get mad, be always glad,
And lend a helping paw,”
sang Grandpa Possum, winking at Little Jack Rabbit, as Squirrel Twinkle Tail peeked out and said:
“Excuse me, Grandpa Possum,
For throwing snow at you,
’Twould be too bad to make you mad
Or just a little blue.”
And then he and his mischievous brother Featherhead ran away and didn’t bother Grandpa Possum for a long time.
“Well, I guess I’ll be getting along,” said the little rabbit and he hopped away and by and by he came to the Shady Forest Pond where Busy Beaver had his home. But of course he wasn’t anywhere to be seen. No, siree. He was in his little mud hut whose roof stuck up above the ice and whose cellar door was way down deep where the water was free from ice and he could swim in and out as he pleased.
So the little rabbit didn’t wait, but hopped along until he came to the edge of the forest, when he started to hop across the Sunny Meadow to the Old Barn Yard where Henny Penny and Cocky Doodle lived all the year ’round. But just then he heard the supper bell. So, instead, he hurried home to be in time for Aunt Jemima’s angel cake.