Quicksand alert

Din Din, Dazel and Delma — the three best friends — were on cloud nine! They were delighted because that weekend they were going to go for a picnic by themselves.

"I can't wait for tomorrow," said Din Din to Delma the dolphin and Dazel the duck, as the three friends lounged by the lakeside, late Saturday evening.

"Are the snacks ready?" asked Dazel.

"Yes, our picnic fruit basket is all set. My mother has prepared the most delicious fruit salads and juices for us," replied Din Din happily.

"I'm so excited," exclaimed Delma, "After such a long, long time the three of us are going for a picnic. I'm so glad we are going to one of the springs near the lakeside. This way I can also be with you two. Otherwise, I can never join you in your terrestrial activities."

"Exactly, Delma!" replied Dazel, "We are also thrilled that you will be with us. Whenever we go for outings without you, we miss you terribly. That is why I spent the entire evening yesterday looking for a new picnic spot in a water body so that we could all be together."

As the sun set, the three friends bid each other farewell with promises to meet early the next morning.

Next morning the three friends were at the lake again, early and fresh! Within an hour they had reached the spot Dazel had discovered for them.

Dazel guided them by flying low, while Din Din followed on land and Delma trailed behind, swimming near the edge of the lake. Finally, they reached a spot where the lake narrowed into an area surrounded by a curtain of long, green fronds. Delma and Din Din gasped in wonder as they saw a tall waterfall, spraying cool water all over them. The pool around the fall was surrounded by chocolate brown mounds of sand. On its far edges grew wild flowers.

"This is paradise!" said Din Din as he sniffed at the wild flowers.

"Yipeeee!" yelped Delma as she splashed under the waterfall.

Dazel laughed in delight, "I'm so glad you guys approve of my choice of picnic spot!"

"Come on guys, come into the waterfall! The water is amazing!" called out Delma to her friends. Dazel flew towards her dolphin friend while Din Din walked eagerly towards the pool's edge. Suddenly Din Din let out a terrible cry.

"Help! Help! Something's sucking me in," cried the dinosaur.

Delma and Dazel rushed towards the pool's edge and saw that Din Din was standing in a huge puddle of sand and was being sucked inside.

"Oh my! Oh no!" cried Delma. "What's happening, Din Din?"

"I don't know! Something's pulling me in," panted Din Din as he flailed his huge arms and legs around. But the more he struggled to pull himself out, the deeper he was being sucked in.

Dazel seemed to be suspended in mid-air. She didn't know how to react to her friend being in danger. There was nothing she could do. She was too light to even try to pull up someone as heavy and huge as Din Din.

Suddenly they heard a voice behind them, "Tell him not to struggle! Just tell him to relax and his body will float."

Dazel and Delma whipped around to see a tall, pink bird wading in the pool of the waterfall.

Delma screamed to Din Din, "Din Din, relax and you will float. Don't flounder and struggle!"

Din Din nodded, his eyes round in terror. He was already halfway into the sand, and now only his upper body could be seen.

With much effort, the dinosaur tried to relax. But he still continued to sink slowly into the sand. His friends began crying out in alarm.

Suddenly, when all could be seen of Din Din's body was his head and part of his neck, he stopped sinking.

"It's...it's...stopped pulling me down," cried Din Din. Delma and Dazel almost wept with relief. The flamingo now calmly waded out of the water and stood at the edge of the sand in which Din Din was trapped.

"Don't make any sudden movements. Bring yourself slowly back to the surface and then lie on your back and relax. Once you are up, float to the edge. I'll call my other flamingo friends and we will help pull you out," said the strange, exotic pink bird.

Soon, a flock of bright flamingos came to the pool and brought with them a thick, sturdy branch. They formed a long line and held onto the branch firmly and gave Din Din the far end of the branch to hold onto. Din Din gasped in exhaustion as he finally managed to hold onto the branch. The birds heaved and pulled in perfect coordination until Din Din reached the edge of the sand. He scrambled up, gasping for breath, his eyes streaming with tears.

Dazel rushed forward to hug him, crying hard in relief.

Delma waited for her turn to hug her friend.

The flamingos watched the reunion in silence. Din Din then turned to the group of pink birds and said, "I can't thank you enough!"

"It's all right!" said the flamingos cheerily.

"But is that sand alive?" asked Delma, still in shock.

"No, no! That is quicksand. Quicksand is a thick, liquid mixture of sand and water. It is kind of like watery soil that can't support any weight. Your dinosaur friend is huge and the quicksand here isn't very deep, so he was saved," replied the first flamingo.

"This happens a lot in this part of D'Land," said the flamingo nonchalantly. "We end up rescuing a lot of creatures who end up in this quicksand."

"Thank you," said Dazel again. If it wasn't for you all, what would we have done?"

"All’s well that ends well," replied the flamingos in unison.

The Adventures of D'Land
Animated Series

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