Friends, please pass this website on to your friends who have small children or grandchildren. Starting this week, there will be a new chapter posted every Monday – Dundee Monday. Adults and their children (and grandchildren) can look forward to continuing the adventures of Tyler and Dundee as they work out the dilemma in which they find themselves. I hope you enjoy their adventures. ~ R
Dundee sat by himself on the bus. I’m scared. I don’t know what to do. I’m just a dog. What if they find out? What will happen to me?
But before Dundee could worry any longer, the bus creaked to a stop at the door of the school. The other children stood in line to get off, then ran into the building.
Where should I go?, thought Tyler as he stepped closer to the front door of the school. Out of nowhere Tyler’s best friend, Kevin said, “Race you to Mrs. Duncan’s room,” as he disappeared among the other children in the hallway.
Dundee followed him with difficulty. He still wasn’t used to running on two legs instead of four and the book bag kept falling off his shoulder. After a warning from the principal to slow down, Kevin and Tyler stopped at Room 221.
Dundee gazed at the petite brown haired lady in the blue sweater who was standing at the door. She must be Mrs. Duncan. She smells like Tyler’s school papers.
“Good morning, boys,” said a cheery voice. “Good morning, Mrs. Duncan,” replied a sing-song Tyler and Kevin.
As the boys made their way into the classroom, Kevin asked, “Hey, Tyler, did you study for the spelling test?”
“No, I forgot,” stuttered Dundee. Oh, this is swell. I can’t spell a thing. I can’t even hold a pencil. What’ll I do now? Tyler sat in the seat next to Kevin.
“Tyler, what are you doing?” asked Kevin. That’s Jessica’s seat. She’s gonna come in any minute and kiss you right here in front of everybody. Quick, get to your own seat.”
Dundee bolted up and looked around. But where is my seat? There were lots of seats in neat rows. Of all these seats, which one is Tyler’s? He stopped to think for a minute. Ha, he laughed. Of course. How silly of me not to think of this earlier.
The other students stopped and stared as Tyler started sniffing all the desks in the classroom. He sure looked funny with his nose pressed to the tops of the desks, the seats, and the papers. Finally, he settled on one desk, turned in a circle and sat down.
Dundee didn’t notice but all the other students and Mrs. Duncan just stared at him for a minute. Some of the kids shrugged their shoulders, some laughed. Mrs. Duncan just shook her head and smiled. Wow, this is great. I really can do this. No one will ever know I’m a dog. Dundee stifled a chuckle as he folded his hands on the desk and smiled at Mrs. Duncan.
After the Pledge of Allegiance, which Dundee managed by mouthing the words, Mrs. Duncan said, “Boys and girls, it’s time for your spelling test. Get out a sheet of paper and number from one to ten.” Dundee got out the paper and the pencil using two hands but that was as far as he got. I don’t know how to write or how to spell. Shucks, I don’t even know how to hold a pencil. He rested his chin in his hand, elbow propped up on the desk.
Mrs. Duncan noticed. “What’s the matter, Tyler?” Dundee lifted his eyes to his teacher and didn’t move. Kevin piped in. “He probably didn’t study his spelling, Mrs. Duncan.” “Well,” the teacher replied. “See how many you can spell, anyway. You might surprise yourself.”
But, Dundee didn’t even try to pick up his pencil as Mrs. Duncan called out the words. Mrs. Duncan noticed. As she picked up the students’ papers, she paused by Tyler and said, “What’s wrong today, Tyler? You seem out of sorts.” Out of sorts! You call this out of sorts? Dundee felt like howling but just shrugged his shoulders. “I had a rough night, Mrs. Duncan, with the storm and all.”
“Maybe you’ll feel better after recess,” she said with a smile and a pat on his shoulder.
Recess, what is recess? We never have recess at home. Dundee looked around to see the other students putting their things in their desks and getting up to stand in a line. He shuffled to the line and followed the other kids out to the playground. The blacktop still had some wet places from last night’s storm, but the sun was shining. Some puddles looked like they were drying up.
“Come on, Tyler. Let’s toss the ball around,” yelled Kevin. Oh, no, how do you catch a baseball? Dundee watched the players plenty of times but he never actually caught one, unless you count the foul ball he caught when it rolled from first base.
Kevin threw the ball and Dundee just watched it fly by. He thought Kevin might get suspicious if he ran after it and picked it up with his mouth.
“Wake up, Tyler,” Kevin said as he ran to get it. “How do you expect to make shortstop for the team, if you’re dreaming instead of reaching for the ball?” He picked it up and said, “Dundee would be a better player than you. Maybe you need glasses.”
Kevin’s scolding faded into the background as Dundee inhaled all the smells in the playground. From the corner of his eye, he noticed something running on the ground. Squirrel! He couldn’t resist chasing the little creature that scurried right in front of him. Although he ran as fast as he could, the squirrel ran up the big oak tree at the edge of the playground. Out of breath, he thought, So, maybe this is why humans never catch squirrels. Being a dog is lots more fun. Dundee looked up at the squirrel flicking his tail, sitting on a branch. “Oh, so you think this is funny. Lucky for you I’m on two legs today or I’d bring you as a surprise to Mrs. Duncan,” he said.
Kevin ran over to Tyler who was ignoring the bell ending recess and heard him talking. He grabbed his arm and said, “Come on, Tyler. The bell rang minutes ago. What are you doing over here at the far edge of the playground? Hurry, we’ll be late to class.”
Dundee looked over his shoulder and gave that squirrel a look that said, Wait till tomorrow. Kevin said, “What do you mean, ‘Lucky for you I’m on two legs today.’” “Oh, yeah,” Dundee replied. “I mean that squirrel sure is lucky I’m not a dog, or he’d be a goner by now.” “Dundee would have caught that squirrel for sure,” said Kevin chuckling.
“Right,” said Dundee nodding his head. “I’m … uh, Dundee is a really smart dog.”