by Gordon Dioxide

There was once a hole that had a mole living in it. He didn't have a name because moles don't usually bother with that sort of thing. He was very happy though, and used to go around singing a little rhyme:-
"I am a mole
And I live in a hole"

He had lots of friends who lived on the nearby farm.
One day, the local tiger heard him singing the rhyme and very much enjoyed it. So the tiger, whose name was Barry, made up his own version which went like this:-
"I am a tiger,
And I live in a liger"

When you think about it, this was a bit silly because there is no such thing as a liger and he certainly didn't live in one.
Anyway, Barry skipped off down the path proudly singing his new tune and keen to show it off to all the other animals.
He met Wayne the hamster who was trying to look cool by blowing bubbles with a pack of bubble gum that he'd found near the road. Unfortunately he was having a lot of trouble because he'd forgotten to take off the wrapper.
Barry sang his song:-
"I am a tiger,
And I live in a liger"

and Wayne thought it was brilliant. It immediately set Wayne thinking, and within half an hour he'd come up with his own version:-
"I am a hamster
And I live in a camster"

Have you ever heard of a camster? I certainly haven't.
Wayne was so proud of himself that he soon forgot all about his bubble gum problems, and set off to look for Brian the Badger.
Brian was out tractor-spotting with a notepad and pencil, but Wayne found him in less than 12 minutes. Can you guess what happened next? Yes, Brian invented a song ...
"I am a badger
And I live in a quadger"

Soon there were hundreds of animals all singing their own songs. By midnight they were making such a din that the farmer's baby woke up. The baby was furious so he climbed out of his cot and went outside to see what was going on. When he saw all the animals singing such ridiculous songs he couldn't help laughing. In fact, he laughed so much that he fell over into a big bowl of gravy, which made him laugh even more. Soon he was singing ...
"I am a baby
And I live in some gravy"

Eventually Barry the Tiger, Wayne the Hamster, Brian the Badger, the mole that didn't have a name, the Farmer's Baby, and all the other animals got so tired that they all fell fast asleep in the middle of the field.
This was a great relief to all the people in the nearby village that had been kept awake by the terrible noise.
The mole that didn't have a name woke up early the next morning and drove to the shop to get some milk. Its quite unusual to see a mole that can drive because most of them fail their driving test due to poor eyesight. In the shop he met Kylie the Hedgehog who was buying some toothpaste to clean her spikes. Suddenly, there was a loud rumbling noise and the shop started to shake.
"Earthquake, Earthquake!" shouted the shopkeeper "We're all doomed! .... no, wait a minute, its just a plane flying overhead."
They all went outside and were amazed to see a big jumbo jet landing in the cow field opposite. A door opened on the side of the plane, so the mole that didn't have a name, Kylie the Hedgehog, the shopkeeper whose name I can't remember, and a couple of cows, climbed on board.
There were 17 cats inside and they told the mole that they were flying to Italy for a holiday and the plane had stopped for a rest.
"Great" said the mole "we'll come with you".
And they did. They flew to a place called Venice, which was very wet because of all the water in the streets.
"This is no place for a mole" said the mole "where am I going to dig a hole?"
And as you can imagine, it was no place for a hedgehog either, or a couple of cows, or a shopkeeper that couldn't swim.
After walking around for a few seconds, they went into a pizza restaurant to get some steak and kidney pie. One of the cows had a cold and kept sneezing over the table, which was a bit horrid. They each had 4 puddings - a chocolate eclair, a jam doughnut, some ice cream, and a toffee cake. Kylie mixed all hers together, but then the cow sneezed on it and she didn't feel hungry anymore.
At ten past two they left the restaurant, but forgot to pay the waiter. The waiter chased them down the street but tripped over and cut his leg on one of Kylie's spikes. The mole bandaged it up and paid him the money. Then the waiter told them that he was fed up with working in the restaurant and asked if he could join the animals on their adventure. So there they were in the middle of Venice - a mole that didn't have a name, Kylie the hedgehog, a shopkeeper, a cow with a cold, a cow without a cold, and a waiter called Luigi.

And then the cow without a cold caught a cold from the cow with a cold. This meant that both cows now had colds and the sneezing was horrendously loud. It started to quieten down a bit when the cow that had the first cold started to feel better, but soon afterwards the cow that had the second cold got worse and his sneezing got louder. They went into a shop to get some medicine, but it was a toy shop so they bought a Power Rangers laser-sword instead. Luckily, this cheered up the cow and he forgot all about his cold.
Later that day they caught a train to Paris and climbed up the Eiffel Tower. There were more than 900 steps to the top and the cows kept stopping for a rest. When they got to the top, the mole decided that he didn't like heights because he was more used to being underground. So they all went back down again, only to find that Kylie had left the laser-sword back at the top. So the shopkeeper had to climb all the way back up again. When he got there, the laser-sword was nowhere to be seen! This was because Kylie had actually left it on the platform at Venice railway station.
They were all starting to get a bit tired, so they checked into a hotel and went straight to bed.
The next morning they found that a curious thing had happened during the night. Their hotel had been moved from the middle of Paris to a place called Pisa in Italy. This of course was completely untrue. Had they checked their train ti****ble properly they would have realised that the train took them from Venice to Pisa, and they had never been anywhere near Paris. The tower that they climbed up wasn't the Eiffel one, but the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
However, they were sure that the hotel had been moved and were very angry with the hotel manager. He didn't know what they were talking about, but, in order to get a bit of peace and quiet, he agreed to move the hotel back to Paris. So a big lorry arrived and pulled the hotel all the way to Paris. Some of the hotel guests were slightly annoyed as they had been enjoying their holiday in Pisa.
The animals weren't very keen on Paris because the streets were too clean, so they decided to hire a car and drive back to Pisa. Unfortunately they didn't know the way and headed north instead of south. After a while they reached the Channel Tunnel, which is a big tunnel under the sea between France and England. They drove though the tunnel, which was a bit naughty because its a train tunnel. Luckily there were no trains coming the other way so they soon arrived back on their farm in England.
That evening they told Barry the Tiger and Wayne the Hamster about all their adventures. While they'd been away, Wayne had learnt how to blow bubbles and he really did look quite cool. Luigi married Kylie in the village church, while the shopkeeper sold his shop and built a pizza restaurant next to the farmhouse. The mole went back to his hole and dreamt about going on another adventure.
He also thought up a name for himself - Steve.

Here are a few questions to see if you have been listening:-
1. What did the farmer's baby fall into?
2. What did they have for pudding in the pizza restaurant?
3. Why didn't they like Paris?
4. How would you have stopped the cows from sneezing?
5. Who was your favourite character in the story?