Excerpt for Sidewalk Surprises by , available in its entirety at Smashwords


By Leanne Halling

Copyright 2017 Leanne Halling

Published by Leanne Halling at Smashwords

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I would like to express my gratitude to Master Stonemason, Chris Crawford, for giving me permission to use his spiral walkway, which he designed and created, to use as the book cover photo for Sidewalk Surprises.

“I have an idea!” You say on an especially springy spring day.

“I’d like to hear it,” says I. “You always have such grand ideas.”

“Let’s go for a walk ‘n talk.”

With our shoes still on from playing tag ‘n talk, our walk ‘n talk begins with three tip-toey steps through creaky gate,

five giant steps down pebbly path,

then a hop, skip, and jump down to Sidewalk.

“Where do you think Sidewalk will take us today?” you ask.

“It’s hard to say in the month of May. It could lead us to a field of flowers that bloomed from April showers,” I say, trying to sound poetic.

“Or to the farm at the end of my arm,” says you, sounding poetic but not making much sense. I give you a wink for trying.

Sidewalk stretches out before us. Up ahead it disappears into Peaceful Forest. “It looks like it will be a foresty day today,” you say. You slip your hand into mine for comfort, since forests are bigger than backyards and things of that sort.

“It’s much cooler in here under the giant trees,” you say, holding tighter to my hand, “…and darker.”

“Oh, it isn’t dark, it’s shady—which is much more pleasant than dark.”

“Is it?” You say, believing me only half -way.


“Who said that?” you say, in a startled sort of way.

“You’re entirely correct,” says I, surprised that you have already met, Who.

You look up at me with confusion on your face.

“O-o-oh, you mean “who” said that, not “Who” said that.” And of all the things that can grow, one of them is the confused expression on your face when you don’t know.

“Who is one of our forest friends. He is the keeper of Pleasant Forest. He asks all who enter who it is that enters.”

“I-i-it’s just You and I, that’s who,” you answer, “on our walk ‘n talk,” you add; incase Who was about to ask.

There was no reply, which we took to mean we could enter…so we did.

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