Puffin Pip's Big Sea Adventure
by Carole Lander
Puffin Pip poked his beak out of the burrow and looked around. The sky above was blue and he blinked into the bright sunshine. The grass was green and soft. Pip bounced on it with his orange webbed feet. Mum and Dad rushed over.
‘Pip, it’s not safe. Get back in the burrow or the crows may swoop down and pick you up in their strong beaks.’
Pip didn’t want to go back. The world outside looked exciting. But then he saw all the little fish in Dad’s beak and hurried back into the burrow for lunch.
One week later Mum and Dad agreed it was time to teach Pip to fly. Up on top of the cliff, all the puffin chicks climbed out of their burrows. They stretched their black wings and the flying lessons began.
Two weeks later Mum and Dad told Pip, ‘It’s time for you to learn to swim.’
Down, down, down they flew to the bottom of the cliff. All the puffin chicks stood nervously on the pebbly beach before following their parents into the water. Out, out, out to sea they swam, looking for fish beneath the surface.
One week later Pip was bored with fishing. He wanted an adventure so he swam further out to sea.
‘Come back, Pip,’ Dad called.
But Pip wanted to find out where the sky met the sea. He paddled furiously and soon the colony of puffins was far behind.
The sky turned from blue to grey. Rain splashed into Pip’s eyes and he could no longer see the point where the sky met the sea. ‘If I keep going I’ll get there soon and then I’ll swim back to my beach,’ he thought.
The sky turned from grey to black. Pip couldn’t see ahead so he floated on the surface of the water and waited for the next day to dawn.
In the morning, schools of little fish swam below him. Pip dived down and scooped some into his strong red beak and that gave him energy to keep on going.
The waves were enormous. Pip rocked and rolled with them. A deep mist surrounded him so that he no longer knew what was sky and what was sea. He decided that this must be where they met so now he could go home.
But which way was home? Pip paddled in circles looking for signs of land. All he could see was the mist. He was getting scared.
‘Mum! Dad!’ he called but they were far, far away. Pip’s legs were limp and his head lolled from side to side. Exhausted, he let the sea carry him until the mist lifted and a then huge black object loomed up, making a roaring sound. As he swam towards it a voice called out, ‘Look down there! It’s a puffin.’
Thud! Pip bumped into the black shape and everything went quiet. When he finally opened his eyes, faces peered at him and fingers pointed. Pip tucked his head into his white chest and tried to hide.