The story of Euan the Anteater

James Walsh
4 min readAug 24, 2018


Once upon a time there were two friends called James and Euan.

One day, after staying up late playing video games, they decided to visit their friend Yoona, who lived on the other side of the world.

“Let’s go by aeroplane!”, said Euan, and James agreed. Cycling to Korea would have taken ages, and anyway: Euan didn’t have a bike.

James and Euan were very excited about getting on an aeroplane.

They played with all the switches, and made the seats go up and down. They said “yes please!” whenever the air stewards offered them a drink or something to eat.

Soon, they were flying over seas and mountains and great empty plains which seemed to stretch on forever.

“I think we’re flying over Mongolia,” said James excitedly. But Euan didn’t hear him. Euan was asleep.

When James and Euan arrived in Korea, they were so happy to see Yoona, her husband Charles, and their two children, Elise and Elliot.

“Where would you like to go?” asked Yoona.

“McDonald’s!” said Euan.

“Some kind of volcano!” said James.

“Come on guys, stop being so silly. I’m taking you to the zoo,” said Yoona.

The zoo was amazing. It was the biggest zoo James and Euan had ever seen, and circled by mountains, like something out of a story book.

“I want to see the flamingos first,” said Elliot, running over to their enclosure.

The sheer number of animals was overwhelming: gorillas, peacocks, giraffes, insects, pelicans, crocodiles, lions…

Everyone enjoyed walking around and seeing as many animals as they could. James and Euan played tag with Elise and Elliot, and helped them eat all the crisps.

There was one animal in particular that euan was particularly excited to see: the anteater.

When we finally found the anteater, Euan was very happy.

“Look at the anteater,” said Euan, pointing to it. The anteater walked slowly in one direction, balancing its weigh perfectly on its massive forearms, before heading back the other way, searching for ants to eat.

Euan was amazed by the anteater’s long nose, its beautiful coat, and its calmness and grace. “I wish *I* were an anteater,” he added.

“You *are* an anteater, said Elliot, making a joke.

“You’re right, I *am an anteater now,” said Euan, joining in the fun. “Ark ark ark ark ark,” he added.

Everyone laughed at the idea of Euan’s sudden transformation into an anteater.

After a few days having fun in Seoul with Yoona and her family, it was time to say goodbye.

They met one last time in McDonald’s – so Euan was happy!

Elise helped James finish his fizzy drink and took a photo on his old camera.

After some farewell hugs, James and Euan headed off to the airport to fly back to England.

James was the one to fall asleep on the aeroplane this time.

And when he woke up, guess what he found strapped into the seat next to him?

Euan got his wish to be an anteater after all! And he now lives happily in a beautiful park in the middle of London, eating all the ants he can find and living in a specially designed cottage.

“I’m so glad we went to visit Yoona and her family,” said James, turning down Euan’s kind offer of some ants to eat.

“Ark ark ark ark!”, said Euan, and they both laughed.


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  • All illustrations by @juanpenguino, despite his useless anteater hands



James Walsh

I like writing stories, singing songs, doing comedy, cycling to places, and being nerdy about my interests. Ex-Guardian community editor