Benson and the Saxophone Lesson

Once there was a young wombat named Benson, who lived in quite a nice hole in the ground with his mother and his two aunts, Lillibet, and Moss.

One day he was just finishing his lunch – cutworms and spaghetti, when his Aunt Lillibet said, ‘Time for you to do the washing-up, Benson.’

She filled up the sink with nice hot water. ‘First the plates.’ Benson washed the plates.

‘Now the glasses, and the knives and forks.’

Benson washed the glasses and the knives and forks.

‘Now the pots and pans. Mind you scrub right into the corners.’ The pots and pans were dirty and greasy. Benson washed very slowly.

‘Now the table-cloth,’ said Aunt Lillibet.

‘The table-cloth?’

‘Yes, the table-cloth. Look at it! It’s covered in spots. It needs a good wash.’

‘Yes, Aunt Lillibet,’ said Benson. She stuffed the table-cloth into the sink. It was way too big. Suds went everywhere.

‘When you’ve finished that, you can do the curtains. It’s ages since they had a good wash.’

Aunt Lillibet pulled the curtains down and piled them next to the sink. Benson couldn’t see over them.

‘The table and chairs could do with a good scrub, too,’ she said. She pushed the table over to the sink and stacked the chairs on top of it.

‘When you finish those, there’s the stove,’ she said. The stove was very heavy, but Lillibet was very strong-minded. Once she had an idea in her head, you couldn’t talk her out of it. She dragged the stove across to the sink and heaved it on top of the stack of chairs.

The chairs started to wobble. Benson got ready to run.

‘And the fridge!’ Aunt Lillibet said. ‘Anyone can see that the fridge needs a wash.’

She pushed and dragged and shoved the fridge over to the sink. She wrapped her arms around it and got ready to lift. The stove on top of the chairs on top of the table on top of the curtains next to the sink started to sway.

Benson held his breath.

Benson’s mother walked into the kitchen. ‘It’s time for your saxophone lesson, Benson,’ she said. ‘Aunt Lillibet can finish the dishes for you.’

‘Okay,’ said Benson, and they scampered off together.

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