It was another nice sunny summer day in New Haven. All farmers were tending their fields. Bees were a buzz, helping with pollinating and the morning dew was helping water all the veggies. Everything was at work. All but one, a certain regional legend known as the Wild Hare who no one could catch. He was in Farmer McDaniels field this time and eating his vegetables.
“Dang it, that hare keeps coming into my field and eating all my crops,” shouted Farmer McDaniels, rate as the Wild Hare dropped a delicious carrot and scurried off, one long leg after the other, into the nearby woods.
“What am I going to do?” I can’t stand someone eating my crop like this, I’m going to lose my mind,” Farmer McDaniels said angrily to himself as he threw done his hoe.
Neighbor, Farmer Gallagher, overheard the commotion and came over. “I had the same problem with that hare last year, he said. He comes by all the farms for a bite. He moved on from me, on to you and so he will do the same and move on one day,” told Farmer Gallagher.
“But I’ve tried everything,” Farmer McDaniels sadly said. “I tried setting dogs on him but that didn’t work. Then I tried setting traps but that caught my dogs instead,” he scuffed.
That’s when Farmer McDaniels young daughter Kayla walked over. She grabbed his hand telling him “Daddy, don’t kill the rabbit, he’s just hungry. I like him. He has such a beautiful coat of grayish brown fur and he has the cutest long ears on a hare people have seen.”
“You should learn to love your visitors McDaniels,” said Farmer Gallagher. “He’ll be moving on, you don’t have to worry about money with him. He don’t eat much.”
Farmer McDaniels then picked up the half-eaten carrot and held it up and shook it and said “Us McDaniels are always ready, you’ll see Gallagher,” he then dropped the carrot and stamped it with his boot into the ground. Kayla then protested, “But daddy, why don’t you listen to me?” I’ve seen that hare too, everyone has and…
“Not another word Kayla,” Farmer McDaniels hissed. That’s when a big smile came over Farmer McDaniels face. “I’ve got it, I’ll try a fence.” He then shouted into the woods, “I’m going to setup a wire fence, you’ll be conquered soon Wild Hare.”
That next Wednesday, things were almost the same as the last. Everything was at work. The air smelled of ripe veggies and the birds were singing away “Chirp-chirp-chirp.” The only thing different, was that Farmer McDaniels had setup a copper wire fence around his crops. It had cost him a fair amount too, but he was satisfied.
So, early that morning, Farmer McDaniels, stepped out his farmhouse and he took a big stretch and let out a yawn, and then scratched his belly on the porch. “I bet my vegetables are safe now,” he claimed. Kayla giggled and followed him into the fields. “Let’s go and inspect my crops now dear,” McDaniels happily said. Kayla then replied, “I want to see too, hee-he-hee.”
They both then walked around the new shining wire fence inspecting it and the crops. But it wasn’t until halfway around when McDaniels shrieked. “What the! That Wild Hare outsmarted me again! There’s a hole dug under my fence.” Kayla giggled at her father, “Hee-hee-he, I knew it,” she said.
As she got closer, she could see a hole just big enough for a rabbit to fit. But then Kayla was taken back by a chewing noise, “Nom-nom-naw-chomp”. It was coming from within the cabbages. “Daddy look, the Wild Hare’s inside the fence,” she gleefully said. McDaniels swung around and looked where his daughter was pointing. That’s when a rather fat and plump hare hopped out from among the cabbages and wiggled his nose. The hare then sprinted for the hole, but he couldn’t fit “Daddy, look. He’s ate so much, he’s too fat to get through.”
“Ah, oh my god Kayla, your right,” a rejoiced Farmer McDaniels bolstered. “I’ve got the plan now, Wild Hare, I’m going to get Farmer Gallagher’s gun and put an end to you.”
“No daddy, please, he’s just a rabbit, please let me try,” Kayla pleaded. “No Kayla, now you stay, and I’ll be back in a minute.”
Farmer McDaniels then ran off to Gallagher’s farm. Kayla looked down at the ground sad and then raised her head toward the Wild Hare. That’s when she got an idea.
“Look you hare, you’ve been so smart before and so if you want to live, you better listen to what I have to say,” Kayla said scornfully to that hare. The Wild Hare hopped a little away but then turned around and looked at Kayla. He wiggled his nose, raising and dropping his ears. Kayla then reached down and touched the Wild Hare, he began purring “Purr-purr-purr.” The Wild Hare’s fur felt so very soft and cool. Kayla then told that hare, “I want to help you, but I love my daddy, wait here hare, I’ve thought of something.” she than ran back to her farmhouse.
Kayla then returned with a rumbling noise that jolted the hare. It was the sound of a little wagon with a chicken’s coop on top. Kayla wheeled it into the fields. As she did, she could hear her father and Farmer Gallagher returning, they were arguing.
“Now Wild Hare, I don’t want to see you dead, so you’ve got two choices. You can get killed by my daddy or you can get into this chicken coop,” said Kayla. As she finished her sentence, Farmer McDaniels had arrived with gun in hand. The Wild Hare, upon seeing him, bolted for the hole under the fence, as he tried to squeeze out, McDaniels raised his rifle.
“Oh, don’t kill that Wild Hare, McDaniels. Everyone knows that hare,” Farmer Gallagher begged. “I’m going to end that legend rate now,” Farmer McDaniels said with rejoice.
Kayla then opened the chicken coop and whistled to the Wild Hare. The Wild Hare then sprang with all its body, rate into that cage in one jump, Kayla then shut the door behind him.
“Look daddy, I did it. I caught that Wild Hare,” she said. Farmer Gallagher let out a laugh. “Ha-ah-ha-ha-ah-ha, that girl of yours is quite smart there McDaniels,” he said.
“Darling, how did you ever do that?” McDaniels said. “I had tried everything.”
“Well, you didn’t try talking sense into that hare, now did you papa?” she said.
That’s when Farmer Gallagher took back his rifle saying, “Why not let go that Wild Hare where he won’t bother anyone again?” There’s some nice meadows up north in Mayberry.
“Daddy please,” Kayla spoke. “Let’s release the Wild Hare in Mayberry.”
“Oh, all right,” said Farmer McDaniels. “I know I wanted to get rid that hare but if I can do it and make my daughter happy, then fine.”
“You made the right decision McDaniels,” said Gallagher. He then walked off happy and content. “Okay dear, we’ll take a little drive up to Mayberry and release this hare where he won’t be any trouble anymore.”
“Thank you, daddy, that’s why I love up, papa,” were Kayla’s forgiving words as she hugged her father.
So, then the two drove up to Mayberry with that Wild Hare. During the drive, Kayla pet the Wild Hare, making him purr real loud, “purr-purr-purr.” Once they got to a nice field by the road, they pulled over. McDaniels placed the cage on the ground and Kayla opened it.
“Goodbye, Wild Hare,” Kayla whispered, as the hare hopped out the cage and into the meadows, he looked back for a moment, he wiggled his nose and raised his ears. It was still morning and while the sun rose, McDaniels hugged his daughter as the Wild Hare hopped off.
“A new legend has been created now,” McDaniels said. “We had the tale of the Wild Hare of New Haven but now we have the tale of the Wild Hare of Mayberry. Then Kayla turned and looked up to her father and said, “Or better yet, now we have the story of the little girl who caught that Wild Hare and let him go”.
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