~ By Nina Manley ~
One day Maggie the Magpie was flying over the English countryside feeling very lonely. All her other Magpie friends were already playing with each other and didn't want poor Maggie to join them. Maggie was very sad and said to herself: "If my Magpie friends don't want to play with me today, I'll just have to find new ones."
So off Maggie flew in search of a new friend to play with. She flew over a farm and saw a herd of dairy cows. "Perfect," said Maggie. "They are the same colour as me. We'll be great friends." So she landed in the grassy fields next to the dairy cows. "Hello," said Maggie bravely. "My name's Maggie. Do you want to play with me?" "Go away bird," said the nearest cow, "We don't have time for games. We need to eat enough grass to make milk for our farmer. So scram!"
Disheartened, Maggie took off and started flying again. Soon she reached the coast, where many seagulls were flying and diving into the waves. Excited to have found some other birds to play with, Maggie flew up to them and bravely introduced herself to the nearest seagull. "Do you want to play?" she asked. All the seagulls around her laughed, "Go away, land bird," they said together. "We don't want to play with you!" So Maggie flew away even sadder.
Maggie's day continued on like this. Flying all over England, Maggie asked lady bugs and butterflies, horses and cats, and even a little human beings, who only screamed when she came near. All of them didn't want to play with her. Feeling extremely sad and lonely, Maggie started flying home. As she looked down trying not to cry, she passed over a backyard; in it was a little dog who looked just as sad and lonely as Maggie did.
Feeling sorry for the dog, Maggie flew down. "Hello; my name's Maggie," she said cautiously. "Hello," said the little dog. "My name's Terry. Would you like to play with me?" Delighted, Maggie quickly agreed and the pair started wrestling and rolling over on the nice green grass of Terry's backyard. When they finished, they started playing tag, running around and under Terry's owner's laundry line. Tired playing tag, they started playing tug-of-war with a faded pink clothes pin.
All too soon, the sun started to go down, and it was time for Maggie to go home. "Come and play with me tomorrow," begged Terry. "Of course," replied Maggie. "I had so much fun today!" So Maggie took off in the direction of home. As she flew home, Maggie thought: "When you are looking for a friend to play with, it doesn't matter if people look like you or are the same as you. It only matters if they want a friend to play with as well."