Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Candy's Confidence

         It is a lovely Saturday afternoon, but the village square is strangely quiet.
The Hamburger Wagon, normally busy with hungry customers and warm air rising from the barbecue, is sitting silently in the square. Its doors are shut and locked up and Gordon, the owner, is nowhere to be seen.
The Waffle and Crepe House, run by Rossetti Keats, is placed in one of the corners of the village square.
However, today the House is closed and won't be open again until Monday.
The Ice-cream Cart is normally extremely busy. Especially on a weekend as fine as this, but instead it is strangely silent and its owner, Terri Chocolate, has securely locked the glass casing that holds the ice-creams and keeps them cold.
The Toy Wagon, that is currently being run by Elma Mulberry, is also much quieter than usual.
The Water Mill Bakery seems to be the only shop that is open, and even though it's not located in the village square its days are normally busier.
  So where is everyone on this fine afternoon?
Why, here they are in the new grandstand! But what are they doing here? Well, for weeks now the Girls Choir at Berry Grove School has been preparing for an opening performance at the brand new grandstand. There are five girls in the choir and they all feel privileged to be chosen for the opening performance.
Candy Mulberry is one of these girls, but unlike the others this will be her first time performing in front of the villagers. And not only that, she has been chosen to stand at the front of the group. Now, Candy is naturally a shy girl, so imagine how she must feel just a few hours before the concert. She and her family stayed at the Walnuts house the night before, so Saffron, Candy's best friend, also in the choir, has been trying to boost Candy's confidence.
" Don't worry Candy," she tells her friend, " you'll do great!"
Suddenly, Candy's mother Mae quietly steps out onto the porch. She looks at both the girl and smiles.
" It's time to get changed and go now you two," she says," you don't want to be late."
" Coming Mrs.Mulberry," Saffron replies." Come on Candy, let's go, and don't you worry." And she takes Candy's paw in her own and together they walk inside.
Saffron's mother Yardley, allows the Mulberrys to use her bedroom for getting Candy dressed. As Mae ties a red ribbon around her daughter's waist, Candy speaks.
" Mother," she begins in a small voice," what if I forget the lines or fall of the stage or trip on my dress and tear it?"
" Then you shall get back up my dear and continue to sing," replies her mother.
" But I'm frightened mother," Candy says with pleading eyes. Mae finishes tying the bow and wraps her arms around her daughter.
" I know sweet pea," she answered quietly. " But you can do this, you just need to believe in yourself. Nothing bad is going to happen."
" How do you know?" Candy asks, her voice muffled.
" Because I'm your mother and I just know these things," Mae replies. " Now, let's go down stairs, we have a concert to go to."
Saffron and her mother are waiting when Candy and Mae come down stairs. Both girls are dressed in the Girls Choir uniform.
" You look very pretty Candy," says Saffron.
" Thankyou," replies Candy, " you look pretty too."
So the two girls and their families make their way to the grandstand.
Once there, the girls and their mothers walk around to where the rest of the choir is waiting to start.
Candy hugs her mother tightly, and tries to stop herself from shaking.
" You'll do fine," her mother tells her. " And your father and I are watching you. So don't be afraid."
" Ok," Candy replies trying to smile.
Once the mothers have left, everyone gathers around Mr.Chocolate. The girls are all giggling excitedly.
" Settle down please everyone," ordered Frasier, "now, let's go!"
 Candy braces herself.
" Here we go," she says to herself, and follows the others out onto the stage.
Candy stares at all the people, and suddenly she sees her mother. She bravely steps forward, and finding her confidence, begins to sing.
The performance is a resounding success and everyone applauds at the end. Candy feels a surge of pride. She did it, she found her confidence.
" Would the lovely young ladies like a treat from the bakery?" asks Christopher, who had watched the the performance from the bakery door.
" Oh yes please!" cry the girls in unison.
And so Christopher brings out a tray of fresh cookies. The girls begin to eat and chat happily.
Candy is especially happy, and gobbles up her cookie.
What a wonderful day! And there will be many more great days to come. Until next time!

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