Annie Mae woke up and so did her excitement. She had decided, the night before, that today was a special day. Today she would find the perfect walking stick.
She set out and searched high and low. Picking each stick up carefully she examined their weight, length, and appearance.
After quite some time she picked one up and felt her excitement perk up. "This is the one!", she exclaimed. She held it in her hand and leaned into it. Strong, she thought.
Then, with the fastest pace one can muster without calling it a run, she set out for the closest hill.
With each step her stick followed, and she pretended she was on a long, and dangerous quest for hidden treasure. When she got to the highest spot, she felt herself approve of her trusty stick.
Annie Mae felt like a queen. She was so caught up in the excitement that she had to show it off. So she set out to show her new treasure to her only friend, her older brother.
As she showed him she noticed her excitement wavering as if on a tight-rope. He looked totally unimpressed. "Has it passed the test?", he asked casually. Her excitement fell off the rope.
Shakily she asked, "what test?" He smiled. He raised her stick up in the air and 'WHACK' he hit the nearest tree to him as hard as could. Bits of stick flew everywhere.
Annie Mae screamed in horror. She swallowed her disappointment. Then promptly exclaimed she would find an even better stick!
She took off deep into the woods. Almost frantically, but not too wildly, she began flinging sticks left and right. Too light, too soft, too rotten, too small, she thought rapidly.
All the while coaxing her excitement, convincing it that the old stick really wasn't that great anyway.
Then, she picked up the heaviest stick she had seen all day. Other spectators would have called it a small log. However, her excitement called it a victory.
Refusing to acknowledge how awkward it felt in her hands, she set out to find her brother.
He grinned big when he saw her. 'WHACK' He hit the nearest tree to him as hard as he could. The small log gave way and split in half.
This time, she walked slowly away and her excitement disappeared without a trace.
She drifted through the woods. Without picking any sticks up she looked and looked. Abruptly she had a thought. Her excitement returned.
I could get my machete and cut down a thick branch! So, with determination that was praised by excitement, she cut down a massive branch.
Her brother laughed when she walled up. She felt her excitement bristle. 'WHACK' He hit the nearest tree to him as hard as he could. The branch cracked right down the middle.
Annie Mae lost it. "NO STICK CAN PASS YOUR STUPID TEST" , she screamed. Her brother stopped laughing. Then, calmly, he said, " then stop bringing me your sticks."