As Paul and his parents sit down to breakfast in the morning, the sun shines brightly through the window. “Today is the perfect day for harvesting fruit in the garden,” says Paul’s father. “The apple, pear and plum trees are full of ripe fruit.” “Oh yes, I want to pick fruit,” calls Paul enthusiastically. “I’ll bet Kira and Douglas want to help too.”
A little later Paul’s friends arrive and they all go to the big orchard behind the house. There they find a little black raven in one of the plum trees, picking a ripe plum with his beak. “Mmmm, delicious,” the raven croaks, “these plums are really sweet and juicy.” But when he sees Paul and the others he quickly flies away – as fast as a raven can fly when its belly is full of delicious fruit. While Paul’s parents climb up into the treetops with their buckets and ladders to pick the delicious fruit, Paul, Kira and Douglas collect freshly fallen fruit from the ground.
Unexpectedly the flying mice also come past in the afternoon to help with the fruit harvest. They use their plane to fly high up in the treetops – all the way at the top where even Paul’s parents can’t get to with their ladder – and as they fly past they pick apples, pears and plums. Then they fly close to the ground and drop the fruit into the baskets. “Thank you very much for your help,” Paul calls to the mice as they change course with their plane and disappear toward the horizon. Even the brave parachuting frog comes past the orchard to help. He hops from one branch to another until he’s all the way up the top of the plum tree. There he picks as much fruit as his little hands can hold before parachuting back down to the ground.
By the afternoon the trees are almost picked clean and the baskets on the ground are completely full. “It’s time to take a little break,” calls Paul’s mum as she sets the table in the garden. “Who wants some apple crumble with whipped cream?” “Me!” “Me!” “Me too!” they all call out enthusiastically. They also all get a big cup of fruit juice.
And once the plates are clean of the very last crumb they get to work again. Almost done! “As a reward this afternoon I have something special for you,” announces Paul’s mum smiling “I made you all a fruity yogurt ice cream!” The hard-working fruit pickers start cheering once again. With the prospect of a cool refreshment, fruit picking seems to go even faster.