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Felipe, the flea, jumped, twirled, and bounced on Bernie dog’s fur. Bouncing to his left, he crashed into his sister.

“Ouch!” she shouted. “Watch where you’re bouncing!”
Leaping to the right, Felipe smashed into his brother.
“Watch where you’re leaping!” His brother screamed.

Felipe bumped into grandmas, ran into aunts, and fell over cousins.

Felipe packed his fleabag and waved to his huge, flea family. “Goodbye! I’m leaving. There’s not enough flea room. I want a quiet space I can call my own.”

Hopping off his dog, Bernie, he landed on an ant scurrying across the grass. “Why are you in a hurry?” He asked, hanging onto the busy ant’s antennas. “Work, work, work, there’s no time to play. I have larva’s to take care of, food to find, and tunnels to dig. I must hurry, hurry, hurry!”

Felipe dangled onto the ant most of the day, but his head was spinning and his stomach was woozy from watching the ant work so hard.

“This is not the home for me–everyone is too busy!” He hopped off the ant and onto a dandelion.

“Buzzzzz, this is my flower, flea!”

A honeybee circled him. “I’m busy collecting pollen for honey.” “Don’t get yourself in a tizzy,” Felipe said. “I’m looking for a home with a space I can call my own.” “Hop on my back! There is a corner for you in my honeycomb.”

Felipe hopped on the bee’s back. The bee buzzed through the air high into a maple tree, and onto a limb with a hanging bee’s nest. The bee dumped Felipe into a hole of the honeycomb. “This is a place you can call your own,” buzzed the bee, and fluttered away.

Felipe scrambled into the hole and leaped for joy, but stopped leaping from the loud, humming roar. “This buzzing will not do–this beehive sounds like a zoo!” This wasn’t a good home.

Leaping out of the beehive, he landed on a green caterpillar munching a leaf. “Hello, I’m Felipe. Do you mind if I stay here and watch you eat?” “Welcome!” The caterpillar said through muffled, bulging jaws

“Stay as long as you like, but I munch a lot and I’m not a very good host.” “I don’t mind, I just want a quiet space that’s all my own.” Felipe relaxed on the caterpillar’s back.

The caterpillar chomped leaves all day, and into the night, until the moon shimmered brightly. It was a terrific home for a flea!

He leaped whenever he wanted, and the caterpillar moved ever so slowly rocking Felipe fast asleep.

Felipe woke up one morning and shrieked. A blanket of silk was being wrapped around him.

“Hey, what are you doing? You’re smothering me!” He screamed.

“I’m weaving a cocoon,” answered the caterpillar.

“How long will we live inside a cocoon?” asked Felipe.

“About two weeks,” the caterpillar replied, wrapping a piece of silk around Felipe’s head.

“Two weeks is too long for a flea!” Felipe screamed. “I need to leap!” He wiggled and squirmed himself free and jumped off the cocoon landing on a mosquito. They swooped through the air and towards a garden pond. “This is fun!” said Felipe.

Suddenly the mosquito dipped in and out of the water. “Hey, stop it!” Felipe gurgled. “I don’t drink this much water!”

Leaping from the mosquito, he landed on a ball of fluffy fur. Felipe drifted down into cozy softness. Cat fur?! A cat home!

He found a home all his own!

Felipe unpacked his fleabag. Leaping to the left and bouncing to the right, there wasn’t another flea in sight. “What a wonderful life for a flea!” Felipe thought. Sleeping all day, and jumping all night, there wasn’t a better home anywhere.

After a few days of bouncing to the right and leaping to the left, Felipe was bored. He did several perfect twirls, but bouncing constantly by him self was lonely. He missed his noisy cousins, bothersome brothers, and bizarre uncles. Felipe missed his flea family.

“I’m going home!” Felipe packed his fleabag and hopped off the cat, leaping towards his old dog home. Bernie, the dog, snoozed on the familiar shredded, dusty rug. Leaping onto his dog, he smashed into his sister. “Hey, watch who you’re hopping on, Felipe!” she squealed. Felipe leaped to the left and crashed into his brother. “Leap in your own spot!” his brother grumbled. He twirled, whirled, and bumped into grandpas, fell over aunts, and smashed into cousins.

“There is no place like my flea home.” Felipe leaped with joy. “It’s crowded, loud, and cozy and this is where I belong!”


© 2002 Sherry Pittinger

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