Stanley Stamper And the upside down house
Reproduced by Kind Permission of Jo Greggain, Children’s worker
Once upon a time there lived a little elephant called Stanley. He lived in a small cosy house with his family and went to school every day. After school Stanley enjoyed coming home and watching TV with his brothers and sisters. Mum would cook a delicious tea before bath time and bed. Life was simple and Stanley did not have a single worry in the world.
One day he was walking home from school when he noticed a strange thing, His house was upside down. The roof was sitting in the flower bed and the front door was high off the ground making it hard to go inside. Inside the house the floors were now ceilings and the ceilings were floors. The TV was upside down which made it difficult to watch his favourite programmes.
The kitchen was even worse with pots and pans hanging where the light fittings would normally be. Later that evening his Mum tried to make the tea but the food fell out of the pans and onto the ground. Bath time was a challenge as the bath was upside down and all the water spilled out giving Stanley a soaking.
That night Stanley tried to get into bed but kept falling out. This was no fun at all and he gave up trying to sleep in his bed and curled up on the cold hard ceiling instead.
At school he felt out of sorts. He was tired from sleeping on the ceiling but also from the effort of living with everything turned upside down. The next day was the same and the next. One day he went home feeling particularly exhausted to find the TV had fallen from the upside down floor and had broken. When he tried to get a drink the contents spilled all over him ruining his new blazer. Stanley had had enough Tears pricked his eyes and a big lump filled his throat. Simple things were suddenly a huge effort. What had happened to his nice easy life? Why had his world turned upside down? What was going on? Stanley felt confused and then very angry. He let out a tremendous roar and stamped his foot as hard as his elephant body would let him. A large hole appeared and another. STAMP, STAMP more holes. STAMP, STAMP, STAMP. His little sister appeared to find out what the noise was about and fell into one of the holes hurting herself. Stanley didn’t care and carried on stamping.
As time went on his Mum and his sister seemed to be adapting to the new living conditions. Stanley noticed that many of the upside down things had been repositioned at ground level. His mum was able to cook normally as the pots and pans were now the right way up. His little sister’s bed had moved and she no longer fell out. Stanley however continued to climb into upside down one and when he fell out made a big song and dance in the form of a stamp.
One day, Stanley was walking to school past the houses in his road when number 6 started to move. Stanley stood aghast while the house slowly turned upside down before his very eyes. Alfie lived at no. 6. Suddenly Stanley stopped thinking about his unhappiness and was concerned for his friend who now had to struggle with living in a house that had been turned upside down. Later that day Stanley decided it was time to make some changes. When he arrived home he moved his bed down from the upside down floor. He positioned his toys the right way up and noticed that his bedroom was almost back to normal although he couldn’t see out of the windows of course. Next he went into the bathroom and heaved the bath down, along with the sink and toothbrushes. In the lounge Mum had replaced the TV so Stanley set about making the room look cosy once again. He even went into the garden to pick a few flowers and placed them in a jug next to the new telly.
When Mum arrived home she gave Stanley a big hug. She thanked Stanley for adjusting to the upside down house and for helping to make things more normal. Stanley felt pleased that his efforts had been appreciated and went outside to the shed to find a hammer, some wood and nails. He spent the rest of the evening mending stamp holes. Later that night the family sat watching TV and ate pineapple pizza (their favourite).
Although things had settled down in Stanley’s house he hadn’t forgotten how hard things had been. Stanley couldn’t help noticing that Alfie wasn’t his usual happy self at school and often seemed preoccupied and tired. So one day he decided to invite Alfie over for tea. Alfie was amazed to find that Stanley lived in an upside down house too and the pair shared upside down bath and stories together. Stanley’s Mum was delighted to hear the sound of elephant laughter when she came home. From then on the friends made the best of their upside down homes. There was no more stamping, spilling of food or sleepless nights.
One morning on their way to school the house on the corner started to move. Before they reached the end of the road it had turned completely upside down. Stanley smiled at his friend and said “upside down houses are more common than I realised”. Alfie smiled back and replied “the best thing about it is that get used to it”. With that they happily raced down the road and into school.