Somewhere on the edge of the forest there was a young tree. She was about six years old so she wasn’t very big yet. In fact, she was the smallest tree in the forest. But her size didn’t match up to her ambitions. She liked being on the edge of the forest. All the big trees said the middle of the forest was the best place to be. Because the forest is made out of trees and being in the center would make one the most interesting tree.

But our tree didn’t really care about that. She liked her spot. She could see beyond the forest and the other trees. She could see the meadow with the daffodils and the cows. And she saw the river with the fish jumping up now and then. And if she squeezed her eyes, all the way in the distance, she could even see the hilltop. It was a wonderful view. If she would be in the middle of the forest she would never be able to see all this

She was happy but still something was gnawing her. And it wasn’t the curious squirrel. She didn’t just want to see the meadow and the hill. She wanted to go there. She wanted to travel. That’s what was gnawing her. “A travelling tree?” said the squirrel. “I’ve never heard of that before.” “I know the wind can travel, and birds. And even rocks in the river travel sometimes. But a tree?”

“Yes.” Said the tree. “I want to go places, I think it would be great.”

“But where would you go?” Asked the squirrel while he was secretly holding his laugh. Because he knew the tree could never move. “I don’t know yet.” Said the tree. “Well.” Said the squirrel. “Maybe you want to go meet the cows in the meadow? Or perhaps travel to the hilltop and lay in the sun, I love to do that when I’m travelling.” ‘Wow.’ The tree thought. ‘That all sounds very nice.’

“I want to do all of that!”, She said. “Alright.”, The squirrel said. “I’ve got to go see some other trees about some nuts. But good luck on your travels.”

“Bye, bye.” Said the tree. “Bye, bye.” Said the squirrel.

While picking up some nuts the squirrel ran into the bee. “Hi.” Said the bee. “Hi.” Said the squirrel. “I just heard the craziest thing.” The squirrel said. “Tell me all about it.” Said the bee. Who loved a good buzzing around and gossip.

“You know the little tree on the edge of the forest?” The squirrel said. “Yes I know her. She lives right by the daffodils that I love so much.” The bee said. “Well.” Said the squirrel. “She wants to travel.” “A travelling tree?” Said the bee. “I’ve never heard of that before.” “That’s what I said.” Said the squirrel. “Isn’t it funny?” “It is funny.” Said the bee. And together they laughed.

The next day, when the bee was seeing the daffodils that he loves so much, he decided to fly by the tree. To see if she still wanted to travel. He landed on a leaf and said: “hi there.” “Hi bee”, said the tree. “I heard you want to travel”, said the bee. “Maybe I can give you some advice?” He asked. “Yes please.” Said the tree. “There are so many places to go, I can’t decide.”

The bee, who was planning on telling the tree that she had to come to terms with the fact that she wasn’t able to move, quickly changed his mind. The tree seemed so happy about travelling; he didn’t want to ruin her day. So he decided to tell her about the town, his favorite place, after the daffodils of course. “If you follow the river.” The bee said. “You’ll come to the town. It’s a great place. They have lots of flowers and sugary things there. I love it.” “Thanks.” Said the tree. “It sounds wonderful.” The bee thought about telling the tree about some other places as well, but he figured this would be enough for a tree that couldn’t move. He felt bad for the tree and decided to leave.

‘Well”, he said. “I’ve got to go see some flowers about some pollen.” “Alright”, said the tree. “Bye, bye.” “Bye, bye.” Said the bee. And he flew of.

The news of the travelling tree quickly buzzed around the forest. All the animals and plants were making fun of her. “Does she even know she is a tree?” The eagle asked the owl. “I wonder.” Said the owl. “Maybe she thinks she is a squirrel.” “Maybe because she is on the edge of the forest, she doesn’t realize she is part of the forest?” Wondered the porcupine. “That is an interesting theory.” Said the owl. “Maybe I should go talk to her, because she can’t go on like this.” “Yes, you should do that.” Said the eagle. “You are the smartest animal in the forest, she’ll listen to you.”

So the owl flew to the tree and sat on a branch. “Hi tree.” Said the owl. “Hi owl, I’m glad you came to visit.” Said the tree. “I want to go travelling but I can’t decide where to go. You are so smart, you will be able to tell me, right?” She said. The owl was a bit confused by this question. She came to tell the tree the truth, but now she didn’t want to. Because she felt it would make the tree sad. “Well.” Said the owl. “I always love to go to the barn. There is a big old tree there, with big branches. They sway in the wind and I sway with them.” “That sounds amazing”, said the tree. “That one is on the top of my list.” “I have to warn you though.” The owl said. “It’s very far, it’s not easy to get there. Specially not for someone who doesn’t have much experience in travelling, like you.” The owl was hoping this would make the tree change her mind. But she was wrong. “That will not be a problem.” Said the tree. “I’ve gotten lots of advice. I think I can do it.” There was no arguing with this one, the owl though. So she said: “Well just remember I warned you.” “I will, thank you.” Said the tree. “It’s turning dark. So I’ve got to see some branches about some sitting. Bye, bye.” The owl said. Hoping that someone else would be brave enough to tell the tree the truth. “Bye, bye.” The tree said.

The next morning the tree awoke to the sunshine and looked over the meadow. She looked happier than ever and the squirrel had to know why. He thought the tree would be sad by now. Realizing she can’t travel. “Hi tree.” The squirrel said. “Hi squirrel. It’s a wonderful morning, isn’t it?” The tree said. “It is.” Said the squirrel. “But I feel like you are even happier than before.” “I am happier.” Said the tree. “Because I have finally travelled.” The squirrel almost dropped all his nuts when he heard this. “What?” He said, totally amazed. “Are you sure?” “Yes.” Said the tree. “I’m very sure.” “Tell me all about it then.” Said the squirrel while he found a good branch to sit on to hear this story. “Well.” Said the tree. “You remember I couldn’t decide where to go?” “I remember.” Said the squirrel. “So.” Said the tree. “I went to all the places I heard of. I went to see the cows and the daffodils. I touched the water with my roots. I went up to the hill and sat in the sun until it got to hot. I followed the river down to the town and even went to sit on the big branches of the old tree by the barn. To sweep in the wind. It was a wonderful journey.”

The squirrel couldn’t believe what he heard. How did the tree do this? “But, tree.” He said. “You know you can’t move from you place, how did you do it?” “Yes, I know.” The tree said. (Which amazed the squirrel even more). “But I don’t need to move to go places, like all of you. All I have to do is listen to the stories and fall asleep. And I can go anywhere I want. It’s really easy actually. I don’t understand why you all go to so much trouble to go places.” She said. The squirrel was stunned. And felt like an idiot. The whole forest had been laughing at the tree for being stupid. While all the while the joke was on them. “It is a wonderful day.” The squirrel said. “And you are an amazing tree.” “Thank, squirrel.” Said the tree. “Will you tell me some more travel stories? So I can go there as well?” “Of course.” Said the squirrel. “And, I will ask all the animals to tell you their stories. So you can go anywhere.”

And that’s how the tree traveled. She traveled everywhere she wanted to go. She was the traveling tree.

The End