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Day 4

Day 4: TILLY THE TURTLE

The next day Missy saw Tilly sunning herself in her yard. She went over and said, "What's wrong, Tilly? You look very sad today."

"I hate being a turtle," Tilly said, sniffling. "There's nothing special about me. I don't have a beautiful tail like you, or come from a zoo like Percy, or have a famous swimming act like Flip and Flop. I'm just big and slow and homely. Nobody ever comes to see me and play with me." Tilly began to cry.

"I like you, Tilly" Missy said slyly. "Forget about what Flip and Flop and Percy say, I'm your friend."

"What do Flip and Flop and Percy say?" Tilly asked.

"I don't want you to feel bad, but they say you're ugly and they can't stand you to be in the pool with them," Missy lied.

"Oh no! I knew it!" Tilly moaned and started crying even harder.

"Oh Tilly, I feel sorry for you. It's not fair. You can't help the way you look. You know, when I feel as bad as you do, I smoke one of these." Missy showed Tilly a marijuana cigarette. "it always makes me feel better. Want to try it?"

Tilly hesitated. "I, uh, don't think so. That's a drug and..."

"Come on," Missy interrupted. "It will make you feel a lot better. It'll make your sadness go away. I do it all the time."

Tilly had never tried a drug before. She had heard they were bad for her, but she was curious. "Well, I don't know. What will the others think about me?"

"Why do you care," Missy said. "Flip and Flop and Percy don't care what we do. I'm your friend.

We can do it together. Let's go hide behind your house."

"Okay," Tilly finally said, and they went to the backyard where no one would see them. Missy lit the cigarette and passed it to Tilly.

At first she coughed and coughed, but after a while the drug began to work. "I feel great!" Tilly said. "I'm not sad at all now."

"Great!" Missy said. "Remember, whenever you feel bad you can get these cigarettes only from me. You'll have to buy them next time, but when you want more just tell me."

For a while the marijuana cigarette made Tilly feel like everyone was her friend. She wanted to play and went out to find Flip and Flop and Percy. She found them in the pool. Percy was water skiing behind Flip and Flop. When they saw Tilly, they swam over to her.

Tilly, Percy, Flip and Flop "Hey, Tilly, what a nice surprise," greeted Flip.

"Yes," added Flop. "Come on into the water and play with us."

"Do you want to water ski?" Percy asked. "You can use my skis. Here, I'll help you put them on."

"I've skied with four skis on my flippers before, but not with only two. I'll try the skis on my front feet and see what happens." But it was no use. Her behind dragged her down under the water. When she tried the skis on her back feet, she almost drowned.

After many failures she gave up. Besides, she felt terrible. The effects of the marijuana were going away, and her old feelings of not liking herself came back even stronger than before. Using the drug made her feel worse about herself-not better! "I'm no good at this," Tilly moaned, and crawled from the pool.

"Please don't leave, Tilly. You just got here," Flip said. "We want to play with you."

"What's the use? I came to play because Missy's marijuana cigarette made me feel like you were my friends. Now the feeling is gone and I know that you can't stand me."

"Can't stand you? Who told you that?" asked Flop.

"That's what Missy said. You think I'm ugly. You don't want to be friends with me because I'm not special like all of you."

"Missy was lying to get you to try her marijuana," Flop said.

"But you don't have to be special to be our friend," Percy added. "We like you the way you are. If we like you the way you are, why can't you like yourself the way you are?"

"Do you really like me the way I am? Wouldn't you like me more if I was famous or pretty or smart?"

"No way!" everyone said together.

"It's the truth," said Percy. "And besides, you are as special as any of us. None of us can take our houses with us wherever we go."

Tilly had to think about that for a minute, but in a moment her face brightened and she said, "You're right. I really am special. I'm the only one in Tuckertown with a shell."

"I know," said Flop. "With your shell, you can be a houseboat. We'll strap a chair to your back and you can give houseboat rides around the pool."

"Good idea," said Flip, full of excitement. "Let's    find a chair and try it out. I want to ride first"

That afternoon Tilly gave houseboat rides until she was so tired she could hardly paddle. But she didn't quit until every boy and girl had a turn. Afterwards she felt good about herself for the very first time.

Later, when Tilly was getting ready to go to sleep,

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Missy came back. "Hey, Tilly, Are you feeling sad again? I've got some more cigarettes."

"You and your marijuana. After the drug wore off I felt worse than ever. But thanks to Flip, Flop and Percy I got over it. They are my real friends. They showed me that I am special just the way I am."

Missy was surprised at Tilly. She was a completely different turtle-not so easy to fool anymore. Missy didn't know what to say so she went home shaking her head and muttering to herself, "I have to do something fast! I've lost all my drug customers since that pigeon-toed penguin came to Tuckertown. It's time to call Scoop Jones."

 

DAY FOUR QUESTIONS

1. Tilly made a decision. What was it?

2. Tilly knew she shouldn't try Missy's cigarette. What reason did she find to make it okay?

3. When the marijuana wore off how did Tilly feel?

4. Who is special?

5. Why did Tilly decide to like her self?

 

DRAW A PICTURE

Tilly wants to remember her visit. Draw a picture of Tilly visiting your class.

 

WRITE A STORY

Tell Tilly a story about something special about yourself.

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