IN WHICH PIGLET MEETS A HEFFALUMP
ONE day, when Christopher Robin and Winnie-the-Pooh and Piglet were all talking together, Christopher Robin finished the mouthful he was eating and said carelessly: “I saw a Heffalump to-day, Piglet.”
“What was it doing?” asked Piglet.
“Just lumping along,” said Christopher Robin. “I don’t think it saw me.”
“I saw one once,” said Piglet. “At least, I think I did,” he said. “Only perhaps it wasn’t.”
“So did I,” said Pooh, wondering what a Heffalump was like.
“You don’t often see them,” said Christopher Robin carelessly.
“Not now,” said Piglet.
“Not at this time of year,” said Pooh.
Then they all talked about something else, until it was time for Pooh and Piglet to go home together. At first as they stumped along the path which edged the Hundred Acre Wood, they didn’t say much to each other; but when they came to the stream, and had helped each other across the stepping stones, and were able to walk side by side again over the heather, they began to talk in a friendly way about this and that, and Piglet said, “If you see what I mean, Pooh,” and Pooh said, “It’s just what I think myself, Piglet,” and Piglet said, “But, on the other hand, Pooh, we must remember,” and Pooh said, “Quite true, Piglet, although I had forgotten it for the moment.” And then, just as they came to the Six Pine Trees, Pooh looked round to see that nobody else was listening, and said in a very solemn voice: “Piglet, I have decided something. ‘
“What have you decided, Pooh?”
“I have decided to catch a Heffalump.”
Pooh nodded his head several times as he said this, and waited for Piglet to say “How?” or “Pooh, you couldn’t!”
or something helpful of that sort, but Piglet said nothing. The fact was Piglet was wishing that he had thought about it first.
“I shall do it,” said Pooh, after waiting a little longer, “by means of a trap. And it must be a Cunning Trap, so you will have to help me, Piglet.”
“Pooh,” said Piglet, feeling quite happy again now, “I will.” And then he said, “How shall we do it?” and Pooh said, “That’s just it. How?” And then they sat down together to think it out.
Pooh’s first idea was that they should dig a Very Deep Pit, and then the Heffalump would come along and fall into the Pit, and –
“Why?” said Piglet.
“Why what?” said Pooh.
“Why would he fall in?”
Pooh rubbed his nose with his paw, and said that the Heffalump might be walking along, humming a little song, and looking up at the sky, wondering if it would rain, and so he wouldn’t see the Very Deep Pit until he was half-way down, when it would be too late.
Piglet said that this was a very good Trap, but supposing it were raining already?
Pooh rubbed his nose again, and said that he hadn’t thought of that. And then he brightened up, and said that, if it were raining already, the Heffalump would be looking at the sky wondering if it would clear up, and so he wouldn’t see the Very Deep Pit until he was half-way down…. When it would be too late.
Piglet said that, now that this point had been explained, he thought it was a Cunning Trap.
Pooh was very proud when he heard this, and he felt that the Heffalump was as good as caught already, but there was just one other thing which had to be thought about, and it was this. Where should they dig the Very Deep Pit?