This is a nice, nice story--perhaps too studiedly, sentient and pleasant to be entirely effective. ""At the one small window a spider had put up a curtain, copying from the wagon wheel""--notes the text while Tim, trying to help the roadside gardener who's gotten sick, struggles with a sack of chicken feed. The observations are not necessarily Tim's and often not necessary at all; something of a strain, too, are the references to his mother by her first name (Laurie, which happens to be characteristically a little girl's) and the words attributed to the animals (""Look-look-look, an egg! Hooray for my new egg""). The situation--a very old man helped by a very young boy who gets more than he gives--can be faulted only for sentimentality. But. . . ""Don't break any eggs, young fella,"" cautions the author, tipping her heavy hand.