Chop Chop

sleeping-beauty

It was time for Amy to go to her ballet lesson. She was the best in her class, extremely talented and was going to go far. Her teacher never had a bad word to say about her dancing, but Amy had one particular problem that drove her and her parents mad. Amy could never be on time for anything. Her catch phrase was always, “just coming.”  Her parents tried every method they could to teach her that punctuality was important, but Amy never listened.

It was the end of year ballet production and the excitement had been building up for weeks. The whole town got involved. Some were making costumes and others were making the stage set. Children who were not involved in the ballet were baking cakes for the party afterwards. Everyone was included, making it a very special event indeed.

Amy of course was Sleeping Beauty and was shadowed by Rose, another very good dancer. Everyone had a shadow just in case they fell ill on the day of the performance. Rose wished she could one day have the lead role but lacked self-confidence. If she had been a little more forthcoming she may have stood a chance, but Amy always made sure she kept Rose back by telling her she needed to work harder.

The day of the performance arrived. Amy was up at the crack of dawn and went downstairs to practice one last time. Half an hour before it was time to leave her parents told her to get ready. Amy knew she couldn’t be late, so for once she did as she was told. She put her dress on and tried to pull up the zip but it got stuck. As she twisted and turned to fix it, her long blonde hair got tangled up making it impossible to pull it down. The more she tried the worse it got. Her mother and sister spent half an hour trying to unravel the mess but nothing seemed to work. There was only ten minutes left to curtain up and Amy was still in her bedroom shouting and crying. There was only one thing left to do. Her mother had to cut Amy’s hair.

“No, you can’t cut my hair,” she wailed.

“If you want to be Sleeping Beauty I’m going to have to!” her mother said feeling more anxious by the second. She took a sharp pair of scissors from her needle box and with two snips Amy’s beautiful long blonde hair was no more. She was free from the dress but they still had to pull the remaining hair from the zip. Finally the zip went down and Amy slipped in to the dress once more. They raced to the theatre and ran in through the stage door. To Amy’s horror she saw the curtain going up.

“Miss Travis, I’m sorry it really wasn’t my fault. My dress got stuck and my mum had to cut my hair and.” Miss Travis silenced her, putting her finger to her lips.

“Amy, I have been as patient as I possibly could with you. This year you haven’t been on time once and today, of all days, you still couldn’t make it on time. Rose is going to be Sleeping Beauty and that’s the end of it.”

Tears were running down Amy’s face as she begged Miss Travis for another chance, but Miss Travis was having none of it, so Amy had to sit through the whole performance watching Rose’s beautiful dancing listening to the “ooh’s and ah’s,” when she did a special move. At the end everyone stood up, clapping and cheering. On the way out Amy heard a number of people saying that they had no idea that Rose was so good. Amy had never felt so dreadful and wanted to disappear.

“Amy, what happened to you?” said Rose looking at Amy’s hair in surprise.

Amy told her the story and then did something surprising.

“You were really great on stage today Rose. I couldn’t have danced better myself.”

Rose was a kind girl and even though Amy had jibed at her in the past she took her comment gracefully.

“I’m sorry you didn’t get to dance Amy, I really am.”

“It’s ok Rose, now let’s make sure that there are always two performances so we can both get a chance.”

“Yes let’s!”

The two girls walked out hand in hand. A new friendship had begun and Amy was never late again.

Goodnight Sleep Tight

Angelica Galea Young

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