My favourite place in the world is the seaside. I love the beach, the funfair, the promenade... Everywhere at the seaside is so much fun. Most fairies don't like the crowds and the noises but I don't mind. I love watching the happy children and hearing the people revelling in the sea, that's part of the experience.
Now the weather is so lovely I've been spending a lot of time at one of my favourite seaside resorts but it's not the same. All the people are nowhere to be seen. It is very strange. The fair is closed. The promenade is quiet. The beach is empty. Nobody is swimming in the sea. My cousin Bluebell told me that all the humans are self-isolating but I didn't believe it until I saw for myself.
So what am I to do at the seaside now? I can sunbathe and go for a swim. And I took some of my favourite books to read. So now I can relive my favourite adventures whilst relaxing on the beach. These are two of my favourite stories.
Jack and the Beanstalk
Jack lived on a small farm with his mother. Since Jack's father died they hadn't been able to keep the farm making money and they were very poor. All they had left beside their small run-down house was a measly cow.
The cow was no longer producing milk but Jack loved the cow all the same. When the time came that Jack's mother had no choice, she broke the news to Jack. The cow had to be sold or they would starve to death. Jack pleaded with his mother but she told him that there was no point arguing. She eventually agreed to let Jack be the one to take the cow to market so that he could find the right buyer but warned him that he had better get a good price for the cow or there would be no supper.
Jack set off to the market, very sad that he would have to say goodbye. He wondered if the cow even knew what was going on. What would she think when he abandoned her? He was nearly in tears when an old man stopped him on the road to the market.
'Why are you crying?' the old bearded man asked. Jack told him that he was sad to be losing his friend and he was worried about what would happen to her.
The old man said he had an idea. He had an offer for Jack.
'I love animals' he said 'and I would love to have a cow to keep me company. Why don't you give her to me? I don't have any money but I do have something you may like.'
Jack wasn't sure. He told the man how his mother wouldn't be happy if he didn't get enough for the cow.
'What I have is worth more than money' said the man. 'Look here.' He held out his hand.
'These are magic beans. They can make dreams come true.'
Jack had never heard of magic beans but the man seemed trustworthy. And Mother would be pleased that the cow had gone to a good person. Jack accepted the beans as payment for the cow and set off home.
Jacks mother was furious when Jack showed her the beans.
'What am I to do with those?' she screamed. 'There's not enough there for one supper for one of us.'
'Mother, these aren't for eating' Jack tried to explain. 'They are magic beans for making dreams come true.'
Jacks mother didn't want to listen though and he was sent to bed with no supper. Jack was used to going to bed hungry. He was worried that his mother would cook the beans so he snuck out of his room and buried the beans in the yard with a stick to mark the spot.
The next morning Jack woke up early and went to look for the beans. He'd had a strange but amazing dream and wanted to try out the magic beans. Oddly, it was still dark outside Jack thought as he looked through the window but when he opened the front door he saw what was blocking the sun and casting the whole house in shadow.
A ginormous beanstalk had grown overnight, taller than the house and bigger than any tree. Jack gazed upwards in awe. The huge plant grew upwards and upwards and Jack couldn't see the top. It seemed to climb forever. The stalk was thicker than his body or even a fully grown adult and the leaves bigger than a cart.
Without even knowing why, Jack had the urge to climb. It was crazy but he just wanted to know how tall it grew. He knew it could support his weight and he knew that he should climb it. It was after all a magic beanstalk grown from the magic beans and maybe this is how his dreams would come true.
So he started to climb. Higher and higher. Up and up and up. The beanstalk went on and on. And still Jack couldn't see the top. He didn't dare look down. Upwards he went. And he kept going upwards until clouds started to appear around him.
When Jack was above the clouds he looked around and was shocked at what he saw. There in the clouds was a gigantic castle. 'How on earth could that be there?' he thought. How did a castle so big stay up in the sky like that?
The clouds parted slightly and Jack saw a road leading up to the castle. A road in the sky was certainly odd but no more so than a gigantic castle. Jack tested his footing nervously and found that he could walk along the road. Within no time he was at the castle doors and found himself knocking.
There was no answer but the castle door was so huge that there was a large space beneath the door big enough for Jack to squeeze under. Jack couldn't help but be curious. He had to see the inside of the castle.
Everything inside was much larger than Jack had seen before. There was a gigantic table and a chair so big that Jack could barely imagine who would sit in it. The cupboards were so large that they were one of the largest things Jack had ever seen, only behind the beanstalk and the castle itself.
Suddenly Jack heard beautiful music. He followed the sound and saw a beautiful golden harp playing all by itself. The harp was on top of a shelf but Jack could see it from the ground. He climbed up the shelves to have a better look and hear the music better. It was a slightly harder climb than the beanstalk but Jack was fortunately very good at climbing.
The harp was so beautiful as was the music it played. It was like something heard in a dream. Jack was lost in the music when all of a sudden a louder noise boomed through the castle and the harp stopped. The noise was of a loud groan followed by loud footsteps. Jack hid and peaked out across the room. An enormous terrifying giant entered and sniffed the air.
'Fee, fi, fo, fum' he bellowed. 'I smell the blood of an Englishman. Be he alive or be he dead, I'll grind his bones to make my bread.'
Jack, absolutely terrified, crept to the back of the shelf. Surely, this giant was just trying to scare him. He wouldn't really eat a small boy would he? Jack didn't want to test his theory.
But the giant was getting closer and Jack had nowhere to run. How was he going to get out of this trouble?
Suddenly, the harp began to play. 'No, be quiet! whispered Jack. The giant was going to find him. The giant turned towards the shelf and came even closer. Jack hid, shaking in fear, but it was too late. The giant reached out his enormous hand. This was the end, thought Jack.
But the giant picked up the harp only and threw it across the room. The giant did not appreciate the harps beauty or music. In the silence he restarted his search for the boy he could smell.
Jack saw his chance for safety. An enormous handkerchief at the back of the shelf. But he would have to wait for the right time. The giant was not giving up his search but his nose was not helping him and he left to another room.
It was now or never. Jack grabbed the handkerchief and parachuted to the ground. He ran across the floor towards the table but with no warning the giant was on him. He had tricked Jack by pretending to leave. The giant swooped down to grab him so Jack ran for cover under the table. The giant was reaching for him but Jack ran as fast as he could.
The musical harp began to play once more and the giant roared angrily, lifting his head and hitting it on the underside of the table. Jack used the distraction to hide behind the table leg. The giant couldn't see him but he couldn't hide for long. When the giant's back was turned, Jack made a run for it.
But Jack had to grab the golden harp before he left. There was no way he would leave it with the giant. The harp stayed silent as Jack carried it through the castle but as Jack pushed it under the door it began to play once more and the giant came running. Jack ran as fast as he could carrying the harp back to the beanstalk.
He began to descend as fast as he could. The giant wouldn't be able to follow him down the beanstalk or so he thought. When Jack looked up he saw the giant coming down after him.
He climbed down faster and faster. The giant wasn't far behind. Down and down they went. But Jack was faster and the better climber. The giant was further behind but still he kept on coming. Jack kept climbing down and down. Descending lower and lower until eventually he could see his home below. But there was no time to slow down. Athough he could no longer see the giant above, Jack could still hear him and he knew he was still coming.
When Jack's feet finally touched the ground, his mother came to give him a hug. She had been worried when Jack hadn't been there when she woke but there was no time for that now. Jack ran to the shed and fetched an axe. He chopped at the beanstalk, hacking away as fast as he could. He chopped and chopped until the beanstalk began to shake.
Finally, when he'd chopped enough, the beanstalk gave way. And down the whole thing came. And down came the giant crashing to the ground. A huge dust cloud rose up and the ground shook. The giant was dead and they were safe.
From that day on Jack and his mother had a complete reversal of fortunes. The music of the golden harp was a very popular attraction and people came from miles around to see it. They became very wealthy and Jack never went to bed hungry again.
The Three Bears
Once upon a time there were three bears living together in a cottage. The cottage was in the middle of a forest where you'd expect bears to live but these were not just ordinary bears. These special bears could talk and wore clothes and slept in beds.
There was the big, strong bear. There was the medium sized, smart bear. And the third bear was a small timid bear.
The big strong bear slept in a big hard bed whilst the medium sized bear slept in a soft queen-size bed. The smallest bear of course slept in the small bed.
The three bears ate porridge for breakfast but first they would go for a walk in the woods to build their appetite. One day they went for their usual walk when a young girl called Goldilocks spied them in the forest.
Goldilocks' mother had warned her about the forest but Goldilocks hadn't listened. Goldilocks' mother had told her to stay away from bears but Goldilocks didn't care. Goldilocks was told to be a good girl but Goldilocks had other ideas.
Goldilocks went to the bears cottage and let herself in. She smelled their porridge cooking and thought she'd try some. She saw three cooking pots filled with different porridge. First she tried the big bear's porridge but she thought it was too sweet. Then she tried the medium bear's porridge but it tasted too salty. But the small bear's porridge was lovely so she helped herself to a bowl. And then another. And another until she'd gobbled up the whole lot.
Goldilocks needed to sit down after eating all that porridge. So she went to the large chair and sat down. But it was too deep and too wide. So she tried the next chair that was the favourite of the medium sized bear. She found it itchy and uncomfortable. There was one more chair, which belonged to the smallest bear. When Goldilocks sat in it, she felt like it was snug but comfortable, until it began to creak and groan. Suddenly the chair broke and Goldilocks ended up on the floor.
Annoyed but unharmed she picked herself up and went to explore the rest of the cottage. She found the bedroom where the three bears all slept in one room. She decided to try the beds.
The first bed was enormous. Goldilocks lay on the bed with her arms spread out wide. It was very hard and uncomfortable. Goldilocks tried the queen-size bed. It was too soft for her liking. The third bed was a little small but big enough for Goldilocks. It was perfect and so comfortable that Goldilocks thought she would lie for a while. Soon though she drifted off to sleep.
After a while, three very hungry bears returned from their walk, all of them hungering for their porridge. The big, strong bear saw his porridge and bellowed 'Someone has been eating my porridge.'
'Someone has been eating my porridge too' said the medium-sized smart bear. Both looked towards the little bear who had tears in his eyes.
'My porridge' he sobbed. 'It's all gone.'
'Who's been sitting in my chair?' shouted the big bear noticing his groove out of shape.
'Someone has been sitting in my chair, also' moaned the medium-sized bear.
'My chair!' cried the smallest bear. 'What's happened to my lovely chair? Someone has broken it.'
Three angry bears made their way to the bedroom. The large bear grumbled 'Someone has been sleeping in my bed'.
The medium-sized bear whispered 'someone has been in my bed.'
The small bear had the biggest shock. Someone had been sleeping in his bed too and that someone was still there. The three bears gathered around the bed and sniffed at Goldilocks. By now, they were very hungry.
Goldilocks woke up and screamed. And poor Goldilocks was never seen again.