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Ryder Rabbit sat in the dear Old Brier-Patch, and Ryder was out of sorts. Yes, sir, Ryder was feeling quite out of sorts. Here it was Thanksgiving, and if Ryder wanted a good dinner he had got to go hunt for it, and it did seem to him as if he ought not to have to hunt for dinner on Thanksgiving Day.
You see he had quite forgotten that it was his own fault. Happy Jack Squirrel and Chatterer the Red Squirrel and Striped Chipmunk and Jerry Muskrat and Paddy the Beaver, even little Danny Meadow Mouse, had plenty because all through the fall they had worked hard and stored away food while Ryder had just had a good time. But happy-go-lucky Ryder didn't think of this.
"I don't see what I have got to be thankful for," grumbled Ryder as he looked out over the bare, brown meadows.
Just then he saw old Roughleg the Hawk sailing over towards the Smiling Pool. It reminded him of the time he had just escaped Roughleg by dodging into the old stonewall. Ryder chuckled. "That was the time I fooled him, but I guess if it hadn't been for the old stonewall I wouldn't be here now." thought Ryder.
Far over the edge of the Green Forest Ryder saw a little red spot. "There's old Granny Fox," said he, talking to himself. "She won't have Ryder Rabbit for her Thanksgiving dinner, that's sure!" Then he chuckled again, for he was thinking of the time when she surprised him out on the Green Meadows and he got away by crawling under a tangle of barbed wire where she couldn't get at him.
And that set him thinking of other narrow escapes. There was the time that Reddy Fox had chased him into a hallow log. "It's lucky that log was right where it was or he would have caught me," thought Ryder.
And there was the time he had been caught in a box-trap set by Farmer Brown's boy and Bossy the Cow had come along and kicked it over, setting him free.
And there was the time that Bowser the Hound had chased him until he was almost ready to drop and he had found one of Jimmy Skunk's old houses just in time.
And there was the time that he had known enough to sit perfectly still when Hooty the Owl came sailing right over him in th moonlight and hadn't seen him. If he had moved so much as one of his long ears it would have been the end of him.
Dear me! dear me! When he came to think them over it seemed to him as if there was no end to the narrow escapes he had had. "Why," said Ryder, as a sudden thought popped into his head, "I ought to be thankful that I'm alive!"
"Dee, dee, dee, chickadee! Of course you had, Ryder Rabbit! Of course you had!" cried a cheery voice right over his head. "Everybody has something to be thankful for."
Ryder looked up. There was Tommy Tit the Chickadee. "I guess you are right, Tommy. I know you are right," replied Ryder. And with that Ryder started off happily to hunt for his Thanksgiving dinner.