In a stubborn old field just east of Cool Spring, Delaware grows a pumpkin patch. Among the community of pumpkins living in the patch, lives many well known pumpkin families; most notable is the Punky family. Ma & Pa Punky have 4 little gourds … there is Spunky Punky, Chunky Punky, Funky Punky & Hunky Punky (Hunky Punky is the curious one.) Hunky often dreams of breaking free from his vines and setting out into the wide world, yet each day he sits in the same spot only to get hopped over by leap frogs and humiliated by passing birds. “One of these days I’ll get out of this patch,” cried Hunky Punky.

Each night Hunky Punky gazes upon the black sky and pleads his wish upon the occasional shooting star, yet a new day rises and Hunky Punky finds himself in the exact same spot. One night, after his wish, a mysterious light appeared. Hunky Punky gazed in bewilderment at the source of this bright light, for before him hovered a ginger fairy. She was quite beautiful, all dressed in shimmering green, with sparkling little wings … and she carried with her a crystallized wand with which to dispense her magic. She had heard Hunky Punky’s wish and with a wave of her wand (WHOOSH), his wish was granted. Hunky’s shoots and vines dislodged themselves from the patch and turned into odd little plantlike arms and legs that helped him move. An eager Hunky Punky set off into the night to explore.

Minutes into his journey, Hunky Punky noticed something strange, and it wasn’t that his makeshift arms and legs flailed aimlessly about, but rather his outer shell was covered in a sticky, gingery residue … crystallized ginger. This stickiness was sticking to everything he passed over … it was terrible. He flapped his vines and … THWACK, TWHIP, THWUMP … he stumbled through a field of sugar cane. TRIP, FLIP, FLOP, FLAP … he trounced through a grouping of cinnamon sticks. ROLL, POLL, BOWL … he rolled into a stream of vanilla extract and … “HELP” yelled Hunky Punky. HELP, HELP, HELP. Hunky’s dreams of leaving the patch and exploring the world were gone. He lay in a stream of vanilla extract, covered in sticky crystallized ginger with clumps of sugar cane and cinnamon stuck to his sides … how humiliating. A passing red fox heard his cries and offered his assistance. Upon rescuing Hunky Punky, the fox offered to help him back to his cave where he could rest himself for the night and have a dry place to sleep. Not having ever met a fox before, Hunky Punky took him up on his offer.

That’s the last anyone ever saw or heard from Hunky Punky. Except for Mrs. Fox and her 7 little baby foxes … for Mr. Fox was really a baker, and Hunky Punky combined with all that sugar, cinnamon, ginger and vanilla made the finest cookies they ever tasted.

”Hunky Punky” © 2005 Bella’s Cookies, Inc.