DULCIE’S DILEMMA

Source

Preamble

(Preamble is the bit that goes in the front of a story in case you don't know what's happening, It sort of explains things in case you need a little extra help)


I was beating myself up, recently, over the fact that I have not written a word for myself over the last week or so. Maybe it’s because I have been too busy with other matters.


But last night I was looking through some old files on my computer and discovered a story that I had written about my dog, Dulcie.

Dulcie, if you have been paying any attention whatsoever, is one of a rare and esoteric breed, the Norbury Mudhound. I had written this story for a friend of mine who is really very rich. It was her birthday, and what do you give a person who has everything?

Well, with Marie, who adored my Dulcie, I thought a story involving both of them, and also a person she really found charming (apart from myself, of course) would be a perfect gift. So a story it was; written as for a child, but with adult characters.


Marie owned a restaurant, ‘Primates’, which was as much a business as a hobby for my friend, an elegant and beautiful lady. ‘Primate’ which served the ‘Modern British’ cuisine was well known and respected for its excellent food in Camden, a fashionable and exciting part of North London.


Whenever I went to Marie’s restaurant, ‘Primates’; at the end of the meal, when the paying customers had left, Marie would say to me, “Is Dulcie with you?” and if she was, Marie would take my car keys and go and bring Dulcie in. But instead of coming into the restaurant proper, Dulcie would go straight down the stairs; push her way into the kitchen and make for the huge walk-in refrigerator, where she knew the Garlic Lamb Shanks were kept. Marie , who would have accompanied her, would choose the best two Lamb Shanks and bring them upstairs to the restaurant and proceed to feed Dulcie by hand.

Two beautiful ladies with but a single thought. Marie’s love of Dulcie. Dulcie’s love of Marie (and Garlic Lamb Shanks).


DULCIE'S DILEMMA

Dulcie wasn’t exactly angry, and she wasn’t exactly worried. How can you be worried or angry when you have The Man to contend with day by day?

She just didn’t feel that she had her finger on the pulse of life. In Dulcie’s opinion, it is very important for a young dog to have her finger on the pulse of life, and for once her finger seemed to have slipped off for a moment.

“Or is it Paw?” she thought,

"Having one’s paw on the pulse of life" sounds reasonable, but it does lose a little in translation. She just had a niggling feeling that everything wasn’t quite as it should be.

You see, she knew that The Man had had an invitation to a Special Birthday Party.

Dogs are clever, and they don’t need to be told certain things. They just KNOW things intuitively.

Dulcie KNEW that The Man had been invited to a Special Birthday Party.

She asked Derek

And just to make sure that her intuition was still working, she had asked Derek.

It was true!

Derek said he had heard of it.

There WAS going to be a Special Birthday Party.

In fact, Derek had admitted that he also had had an invitation.

And then, when she had pressed him on the subject, Derek had also admitted to Dulcie that the Special Birthday Party was for Marie.

MARIE!!!


“She’s almost related to me,” thought Dulcie, “My Auntie Marie”.

And she smiled to herself.

“My Auntie Marie won’t let me down!”

Of course, if she waited long enough, she would be bound to get an invitation to The Party.

“It will be at ‘Primates’ my favourite restaurant,” thought the little dog.

“I go there lots and lots; and I can honestly say that I’m the only person who goes there who isn’t a Primate. And that must make me a little bit special.”

"Derek will know."

But although she waited and waited, no invitation came through the door.

Dulcie began to panic.

What should she do?

“Derek will know,” she thought to herself; and the next time The Man went to Derek’s house, Dulcie went with him.

Source

She watched Derek as he prepared a meal. It was something with feta cheese, Italian tomatoes and green peppers.

“Looks a bit like something I’ve seen at ‘Primates’,” said Dulcie, “Have I told you that I’m going to have Garlic Lamb Shanks at Marie’s Birthday Party?” she asked her friend.

“I always have Lamb Shanks when I go there. They’re wonderful”.

But still there was that niggling feeling that perhaps she wouldn’t receive her invitation.

When Derek had finished preparing the meal, she took him aside and shared her problem with him.

She asked him in a confidential voice if he knew whether she would be going to The Party.

Derek just shrugged his shoulders and admitted that he didn’t know.

She felt quite depressed by now.

“If I hear anything, I’ll let you know,” he said.

The day of the party arrived

Eventually the day of The Party arrived.

She knew that it was The Party day because there was a lot of activity and she also noticed that The Man had ironed his black silk shirt.

“He thinks he looks hot in that shirt,” she said to herself, “He’s bound to wear that to The Party”.

“How I can persuade him to take me with him?" she asked herself.

But The Man seemed to be too busy to notice the little dog.

There was the sound of letters dropping through the letter-box in the front door.

Source

“My invitation,” thought Dulcie, and she ran to the door to collect her mail. But there was nothing for her, only a Readers’ Digest offer to win an island in the middle of the Atlantic and a final reminder to pay the Water Rates.

“That’s it,” she thought bitterly, "My invitation has been lost in the postal system.”

She went out into the garden to think. Zoki and Harry were out there already. She thought of talking to them about The Party. But what was the point? Zoki and Harry were only eleven months old and so they were far too young to go to parties. Dulcie was two and three-quarters and so she was certainly old enough to go to Special Birthday Parties.

But it doesn’t help much if you are two and three-quarters and your Invitation hasn’t arrived!

After a while Harry and Zoki went indoors and Dulcie was left alone in the garden. She seemed to have been out there for ages.

It was such a lovely day.


The sun hung low in the sky. The leaves were golden on the trees. It was a glorious day.

“Autumnal,” thought Dulcie, and she decided that she would go in and tell The Man how lovely she thought it all was. She loved, sharing beautiful things.

But when she tried to get into the house, she was horrified to discover that the kitchen door was closed. Harry and Zoki were in the kitchen looking out at her.

“He’s gone!” she thought, “The Man’s gone without me!”

The kitchen door was locked, so she couldn’t get in. Even the windows were locked.

So she shouted as loudly as she could. But did The Man come downstairs and open the door?

No!

She shouted even more loudly. (It’s amazing how much noise she could make if she really put her mind to it.)

Zoki and Harry shouted back. Between the three of them, they made and awful lot of noise.

But still, The Man didn’t come down to let her in.

One thought burned into Dulcie’s mind.

The Man had gone to The Party without her!

How could he have forgotten her? How could he?

Even at ordinary times he had taken her with him when he went to ‘Primates’.

And here it was, Marie’s birthday party, and he had gone without her.

DISASTER!!!

Source



DISASTER!!!

What should she do?

She was certain she wasn’t going to stay in the garden while all the fun was going on.




Dulcie had only been to one Birthday Party in her life, and that had been her own. The party had taken place at her mother’s home and there had been Daniel, Scarlett and Vaugan, (two of her brothers and her sister).

It had taken place somewhere near Streatham Common, and there had been balloons and lots of interesting people.

There had been a cake that Daniel had eaten all by himself, and then been wonderfully sick.

It had been a superb party.

It had taken place in the day time, and so Dulcie assumed that Marie’s party would also be in the day time.

This is Plan B,” thought Dulcie, “Something tells me that Marie might not have her party on Streatham Common, but I can’t be sure.

Plan B

“Streatham Common is on the way to ‘Primates’ and I feel that I should look in there first.

“Just in case!!”

“But I still feel,” (and her canine intuition came to the fore at this stage) “that The Party is going to be at ‘Primates’, and I have a rough idea of how to get there”.

But first, Streatham Common.

The back door was closed, and she was, so to speak, imprisoned in the back garden. But Dulcie was a good jumper, and could have jumped the fence with ease.

So she did!

She had never needed to leave the garden before, and so she had never attempted to escape.


The fence was high.

The neighbours were grumpy.

But if you are a small dog who thinks that the world is passing you by and that you are missing a wonderful Party, what does it matter how high a fence may be?

So Dulcie, in the face of great danger, jumped and jumped, and then she was over the fence and making straight for Streatham Common.

But when she got there, was there a party in full swing?

No!

Were there balloons and lots of interesting people?

No!

Was there a cake?

No!

But all of these paled into insignificance when she realized the terrible fact:

Was Marie there? ...or The Man?

NO!!!

“I was right,” thought Dulcie. “All right. It’s Plan A”.

There’s no point hanging around Streatham Common, unless you have something to do there, so Dulcie sat down and thought of how she could put Plan A into practice.

“First of all,” she thought, “I’ve got to cross the river”.

But how?

And then almost as if Fate were determined that the little dog should attend The Party, a voice fell on her ear.

“You lost?” said the voice.

"You lost?" said the voice.

Source

Plan A Takes Shape

Dulcie turned. A tall young man with extremely short hair, wearing faded blue, ragged denims and more ear-rings and nose rings than Dulcie thought in really good taste, stood behind her.

He looked hard.

“You lost?” asked the young man, and although his words were clipped, his voice had a warmth and kindness that Dulcie found reassuring.

She explained to him that she needed to get to the other side of the river, and she attempted to explain the approximate area where 'Primates’ was situated.

“You need Camden,” said the young man. ‘‘Come with me, ‘‘and he led the way to a battered old red Ford Cortina.

“Hop in Doggie,” he said, “I’m not going that far, but I can take you as far as Brixton; and the Underground runs from there. I’m sure somebody will help you from there on”.

While they drove together through Streatham, the young man chatted to Dulcie, and they found they had many things in common.

“I love Streatham Common,” said the young man, “especially at this time of the year”.

But when the young man wanted to share half a Mars Bar with her, she refused politely.

“I’m going to my friend Marie’s Birthday Party. I’m going to have Garlic Lamb Shanks when I get to The Party,” Dulcie explained, “I always have Lamb Shanks at ‘Primates’."

Brixton

At Brixton Underground Station they said, “Goodbye” to each other and the young man drove off, trying to look hard again.

“He doesn’t fool me,” thought Dulcie, “He’s a softie, really”.

In Brixton, Dulcie began to regret having decided to travel by herself. She had never seen so many people in one place, except when she had gone to Oxford Street with The Man; and then she had felt safe, because she had been with the person she trusted and relied on most in the whole world.

But here, nobody seemed to be interested in a little dog, and she was worried in case anybody trod on her by accident.

If only she had a friend.

She sat on the floor in the corner, near the ticket office, and wondered how she was going to attempt the next stage of Plan A.

It was then that she saw an old lady also sitting on the floor quite near her. She was surrounded by plastic bags.

‘‘Ullo, Darlin’” said the old lady, “Where are you goin’?”

Dulcie explained.

“That’s easy,” said the old lady.

“Easy for you,” thought Dulcie, “but I’m a dog, and you’re a lady”.


Plan A - the next step

The old lady seemed to understand Dulcie’s fears.

“Stick with me,” said the old lady, “I’ll get you to Camden. Dogs travel free on the Underground, Darlin'” and she winked at the little dog. “Come on,” she continued, and gathering up her plastic bags she strode off towards the ticket barrier with Dulcie beside her.

How she managed to get through, Dulcie didn’t know, as she didn’t seem to have a ticket, but Dulcie wasn’t watching really carefully. Her mind was more concerned with her destination in Camden.

They boarded the Underground Train and soon they were travelling at great speed through the Tube system.

As they rattled along, Dulcie and the old lady engaged in deep and meaningful conversation together. Soon several people in the carriage joined them in their discussions.

They all listened carefully to the old lady as she expounded her ideas on the Meaning of Life.

“So that’s what it’s all about,” thought Dulcie.

She became so engrossed that she hardly noticed the time flying by.

“This is us,” said the old lady, as she gathered her bags together, “I’m getting out here, but you have to change”.

“Change?” thought Dulcie, quite startled, “Where? How?”

The old lady pointed to a sign.

“There you are Darlin’; go down there,” and she indicated the direction that Dulcie must follow.

“Before you go, Love,” said the old lady, “do you want something to eat?” and she started to rummage in one of her plastic bags, “I’ve got some nice sandwiches here. ...Salt Beef, Coronation Chicken, Avocado... and...”

“No thank you,” said Dulcie, politely, “But I’m having Lamb Shanks at The Party; Garlic Lamb Shanks. Thank you all the same”.

And the two parted, each going her own way.


Dulcie watched with care as one stop succeeded another, until at last the train pulled into Camden Town Underground Station.

This was all new territory to her and she felt really apprehensive in case she wouldn’t be able to find the restaurant. After her long trip, and having got this far it would have been awful if she had to find her way home again.

And how? It had been difficult enough getting there; and she had been lucky with the people who had met and helped her.

Would she be as lucky on the return trip?

But Dulcie was an optimist, and she felt that the restaurant, and Marie, were just around the next corner.

A combination of luck, basic canine instinct and some directions from an elderly cat she met sunning himself on a doorstep, and she soon found herself in Royal College Street.


Source

“I’m almost there? I can feel it!” said Dulcie, and she could feel the excitement welling up inside her.

Soon, ever so soon, she would see Marie and she would be at The Party.

And then, almost as if by magic, she was on the pavement outside ‘Primates’.

Source



Then the bitter truth!

The restaurant was closed!

There were no lights!

There was no Marie!


A huge wave of depression swept over Dulcie. Now what should she do? She sat down to think. She always did her best thinking in a sitting position.

"It's closed," said a voice.

Source



“It’s closed!” said a voice.

Dulcie looked up to see a man sitting on the bonnet of a car quite near to her.

“That restaurant is closed, Dog.

I’ve come all this way, and that restaurant is closed”.



Dulcie looked closely

The accent seemed strange, yet the man’s face seemed familiar.




“Hi, Dog’ said the man, and Dulcie recognised the accent as being American.

Source

She smiled at him and wagged her tail, trying to recall where she had seen his face before.

Then, having scrutinised the little dog carefully, the man said, “Excuse me, I don’t think I’m wrong, but, are you Dulcie Dog, widely famed in literature?”

“I am,” said Dulcie, and then, at last recognising the very presentable American before her, “And you, are you the equally famous Tommy Lee Jones, star of stage and screen?”

“The very same,” said the man.

At once the two were friends.


Dulcie explained that she had come to ‘Primates’ to help celebrate her favourite (honorary) Aunt’s birthday, and had been dismayed to discover that the restaurant was closed.

Tommy Lee Jones explained that he had travelled half across the civilised world to try the highly celebrated cuisine at ‘Primates’, only to discover that the restaurant was closed.

“Allow me, Miss Dog, to offer you a meal at least,” said the man, “I have heard that there is a quite reasonable restaurant in Wandsworth, and I would be proud if you would accompany me there”.

“Ah! Harvey’s,” said Dulcie to herself, and then aloud ‘‘Thank you, Mr. Jones, but no, I’ve heard that it’s quite good, but I really want to see my friend Marie, and frankly, I don’t think that Harvey’s could better the Garlic Lamb Shanks that…”

She would have continued, but there was the sound of a car drawing up.

A car drew up. Who could it be?

“At last, we’ve been looking for you everywhere.” said a voice.

It was Derek, and he was trying to sound cross, but really, he just sounded very relieved.

Dulcie jumped for Derek, to show that she was glad to see him.

“I had an idea you would have come here,” he said, “We've been looking everywhere, and You-Know-Who is almost out of his mind with worry. You know how he gets! But that’s enough about you and him, let’s talk about ME,” said Derek.

At this, Dulcie smiled secretly to herself. Derek was only happy when he was thinking about himself and talking about himself.

“I want to get to The Party as soon as possible, because Marie has heard that you have gone AWOL, and she’s worried too; but mainly, I am missing The Party myself”.

It was then that Derek noticed the Famous Actor.

Dulcie introduced them, and then a thought struck her.

The Famous Actor had travelled half across the civilised world to eat at ‘Primates’; at least he could meet Marie before he had to return to America, and in that way, at least, he would discover and experience some of the hospitality that the restaurant was famous for.

“Mr. Jones,” said Dulcie, “you offered me a meal, and I refused; but please, would you accept my invitation, and be my partner at Marie’s party?”

“I accept,” said the Famous Actor.

“Are you two ready?’ said Derek.

Within minutes Derek, Dulcie and Tommy Lee Jones were speeding in Derek’s car through the streets of North London.

The car pulled up outside an elegant facade, and the three stepped out onto the pavement.

There, awaiting them, were Marie, The Man and lots of interesting people.

Dulcie jumped for The Man, to show that she was sorry for causing him distress.

“I was upstairs in the bath when you started shouting at the kitchen door," said The Man. “You should have known I wouldn’t have gone without you. Marie wanted you here. You were on my invitation”.

Then Dulcie jumped for Marie, to show her how much she loved her.

Then Dulcie introduced Tommy Lee Jones to Marie.

Marie thought he was very nice.

Dulcie watched Marie and the Famous Actor chatting so happily.

She saw The Man and Derek chatting together, and looking so happy again, after having thought that Dulcie had really gone missing.

Her eyes caught Marie’s eyes, and for a brief second there was that wonderful smile that Marie had.

Dulcie felt a lump in her throat; but it wasn't Garlic Lamb Shanks.

Source

More by this Author


Comments 53 comments

snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Oh Marie must have loved this! Are these your drawings? Do you have more Dulcie stories? Is this published? You have got the world seen through the dog's eyes down to a T. Love it. Love the artwork. Regards, snakeslane


Becky Katz profile image

Becky Katz 5 years ago from Hereford, AZ

Gorgeous story. I am in awe of it. The voice was perfect. They are just like two year olds.


Sunnie Day 5 years ago

Hello Ian

What an adorble story..I bet Marie loved it! You have been holding out..I do not think I knew you illustrated. They are truly such wonderful picutures....Dulcie was such a loved dog! A cute story for sure..Would make a lovely book.

Love,

Sunnie


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you snakeslans. yes, it is my own "artwork". Dulcie was the easiest dog to draw. She was just a "scribble" dog.

I did several "Dulcie Books", bit they were either 16 or 24 pages little books with a couple of sentences at the bottom of each page, and a drawing of Dulcie or something above. It was to encourage the children in my classes to read. I was so lucky... two of my Head Teachers allowed me to bring my dogs into school and you would be amazed how much fun and written and oral and language work we got out of that.

I wrote another longer book about my dog, Zoki. one of Dulcie's sons... that is one of the best I have written.

Thanks for the kind comments.


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

OMG! Such talent! I am impressed!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thanks Becky. I really enjoyed writing the story because I knew that Marie would enjoy it and also the children in my classes enjoyed reading it.

The staff at ‘Primates’ weren’t too pleased, however, because Marie insisted that they read it before she would let them go home on that night. I can remember the chef, the sous chef, the washer up and the waiter sitting there and reading it and most probably hating my guts.

She even insisted some of the customers should have a look… and they were a classy lot, so I am lucky I didn’t have a contract taken out on my life as a result.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you, Sunnie. I love fiddling around, and drawing has always been fun for me. But lately I haven't done any at all. I wish I had drawn the illustrations for the book I wrote about Zoki, that I mentioned to snakeslane. That would have been fun, but perhaps I will.

It's just that they don’t let us have sharp pencils at drawing class at Twilight Lawns, and it’s too difficult to draw fine lines with the thick crayons they make us use,

Our Art Teacher, Lettice Rogers-Allbody won’t even let us use scissors or a pencil sharpener.

Ha ha!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you for that kind comment, snakeslane. Being able to draw can have its disadvantages. When I was at Teachers' College, I was pretty good and the Art Lecturer tried to persuade me to change my course from Primary to Secondary Art.

I told her I didn’t want to be an Art Teacher... in fact I didn’t want to be a teacher at all. She got really pissed off with me. But she got her revenge eventually.

Miss Braine, I hate you!!!


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Oh wow, I am just so pleased for you (despite Ms Braine) these dog 'scribblings' are amazing, and with the story, so complete. But the drawings themselves are lovely, I am so happy you published them here today.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Snakeslane, I am so arrogant that the original picture of Dulcie at the end of this hub hangs in a frame in my hall.

She was not only very easy to draw, she was a lovely dog, I know they all are, but she was special... as were her family.

And once again, thank you for your kind comments.

By the way, the last picture of the diving boy in your hub has haunted me all day. I have it printed on my mind... I says, "Youth, joy, daring, innocence" It's lovely.

I am glad you didn;t find out their names... they personify all sorts of lovely clean and wholesome and pure things, that to know who they were would, perhaps rob them of those qualities, somewhat.

maybe I'm wrong, but that's me!


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Hi Ian, oh I am so happy you have the original Dulcie framed and hanging in your hallway, that is not arrogant at all, that is the artist's work being treasured, as it should be. I've dabbled in a bit of art myself, not to compare, and nothing to compare with what you have here. Thanks for the thumbs up on the canyon boys, I've just sent a link to my sister. Not heard back yet.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

If your sister doesn't respond, just let me know and I'll go around to her place and throw a brick through her window... or kick her cat.

Just let me know, I have all the time in the world.

That's what friends are for.


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Too funny! She would not have a cat (I have four). Please, no violence. I'm sure she will respond. Will let you know. There are a few other windows that could use a brick, will keep that in mind, never had that 'service' offered before, got me thinking. What fun!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Always willing to please, That's the sort of nice, helpful chap I am.

Great fun at the seaside. Just show me a deserted beach and I'll show you a romp in the shallows that will keep you laughing for days.

I can give you a guided tour around IKEA that would make your mind spin, and any time you want inspiration for a painting of the Slaughter of Innocents, I can come up with a new twist.

My entertainments always go off with a bang… Just ask Josie or Ghastly Prendy.

My hubs are more brochures of how to murder an irritating neighbour or useless vicar than exercises in writing or flower arranging.


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Oh wow! I love Ikea! And I have an irritating neighbor from hell! You are turning out to be a gift from heaven!


Sunnie Day 5 years ago

lol...well I will slip you a pencil set..when no one is looking..I love pencil drawings..they are my favorite...Fun!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Snakeslane, I thought I was completely cured of my lingering OCD, but I went to IKEA the other day with Annie, my guest from Australia, and something happened there that proves to me that I have a long way to go.

It wasn't the Dragon cutlery that triggered it off this time; it was the 365 range coffee mugs. Thanks to the National Heath System, expensive therapy and self medication, it wasn’t as serious an attack as I have had in the past, but I feel that I am not out of the tunnel yet.

I suppose Joan of Arc got over hearing her “voices” eventually, but it did involve being burned at the stake as a witch, thanks to the Church, the English and a rather careless Dauphin, but I don’t think that will be necessary with me… Well I hope not.


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Haahahahha! 365 range coffee mugs? That's what set this off? I need more information on these mugs, please!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

I don’t think there’s a chance in Hell of you slipping me a set of HB pencils or 6B pencils, Sunnie.

I remember when you came to Twilight Lawns to attend that Seminar on ‘Keeping Chickens in a Domestic Environment’ and you and Raj got so friendly,

Can’t you remember that you sat in on one of Mr Palmers-Solid’s Poetry Writing Club afternoons, and Cissie asked you if you would lend her your pen and she attacked Mr Wilberforce with it because he said that she “didn’t know the difference between Iambic Pentameter and a bicycle pump”?

The poor old bugger spent weeks in the local National Health Scheme hospital and even after the plastic surgery he still whistles when he farts.

Imagine if any of the other residents saw me with a sharp pencil instead of my usual wax crayons.

I still sit at the same table where Ghastly Prendy sits… You know, the one where we all have to use plastic spoons and forks because some sillyy people get a little naughty with metal.

I’m almost better now, though. Nurse Smythe says I’m almost cured.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Snakeslane, I wrote some hobs on 'Having OCD is not Always Fun', which dealt with my fixation on counting Dragon cutlery, but there are a few references to 365 range Coffee Mugs in there, which might help to explain my condition.

I feel another hub coming on. It's more therapy than literature; more therapeutic than literary.


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Well therapyize all you like, we've got your back.


Sunnie Day 5 years ago

I am laughing so hard..I can not even think of a decent response..Oh My...let me back track..I will not be sneaking in any pencils..I sure do not want you to end up whistling when you fart like Mr Wilberforce ...so saying that ...wax cryons it is for now...


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Well, for the moment maybe better off with the crayons, you know with all those other patients hovering around, but I hope this is a temporary stay, you really need to get home and attend to your cutlery drawer. Thinking may be time to start a whole new set.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Just a one word answer to your last sentence, my friend:

"Eeeek!"


snakeslane profile image

snakeslane 5 years ago from Canada

Gotcha!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Ha ha ha!


Becky Katz profile image

Becky Katz 5 years ago from Hereford, AZ

Reading these comments and giggling. You do bring out the child in us all.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

Oh, Ian - I do love Dulcie so. Wish I"d known her, and Marie, as well.

This story moves so smoothly, I read it like eating chocolate! I'm so happy you've shared it with all of us faithful friends. That little dog has become a real, live person to me.

And your artwork is glorious! It has a-c-t-i-o-n which - in art - to me is comparable to l-i-g-h-t and to music in poetry! In a story, it's all there in this one! I'm just awed, delighted and warmed. What a delightful holiday on a rainy, chilly afternoon.

It really does need to be published in a book, hard or soft-cover, and/or online - where others can read it. Your students were most fortunate to have had you as their teacher.

At the moment, I'm still much too caught up in the warmth and sentiment of the story to think of any fun witty comments, But I've enjoyed reading them. . . .

Hugs, dear friend.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thanks, Becky. I have so much of the child in me. I can be naughty, I can be silly, I can sulk for at least five minutes at a time, but I hope I never get boring.

Maybe I will when I grow up.


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Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Nellieanna, what a delicious (no pun intended) comment: "This story moves so smoothly, I read it like eating chocolate!"

Thank you so much. It was fun to write, and yes, I would like to publish, but really, I would like to publish all the quality (I hope it is) stories and poems that I have written... it gives (or would give) a fuller picture of myself. Yes, even the Dulcie one and 'Then Again There Was Zoki...'.

Better than a pretentious volume of awful stuff.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Nellieanna, what a delicious (no pun intended) comment: "This story moves so smoothly, I read it like eating chocolate!"

Thank you so much. It was fun to write, and yes, I would like to publish, but really, I would like to publish all the quality (I hope it is) stories and poems that I have written... it gives (or would give) a fuller picture of myself. Yes, even the Dulcie one and 'Then Again There Was Zoki...'.

Better than a pretentious volume of awful stuff.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

Thank you - and no chance of you writing or publishing a pretentious volume of awful stuff, ever! Just do your wonderful stories! They are needed!


Lady Wordsmith profile image

Lady Wordsmith 5 years ago from Lancaster, UK

Ditto, what everybody else what loves you has said!

As my grandma would say, 'you should send it in'. You should send it in, Ian! I cannot understand why this is not already in print, with your beautiful illustrations. Why? Why, why?

I love this, love it I say! I have a book by Enid Blyton, called 'Bimbo and Topsy', about a kitten and a puppy who get up to mischief, of course. Your story is so reminiscent of that one, only excepting that it's much better! (Sorry, I don't usually like to use so many exclamation marks, but in this instance, I can't help it.) I like that it's written in a child/dog's voice, but is written for adults. Little jokes scattered about, little bits and bats that adults would understand and laugh at, but which children would blissfully miss. My children would love this kind of story - I wish you would consider 'sending it in' :)

And the characters! You have that gift of saying very little about your characters, whilst drawing them vividly at the same time. That's a real talent.

Are you going to publish the others here? Or are you going to 'send them in'?

Sorry for neglecting you for so long - what an idiot I am. I think I've missed a few things, as there are some titles in your 'latest hubs' area that I've not seen before.

Ian, my dear friend, you make me want to write - and I can't think of a better compliment than that :)

Linda.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Linda, thank you for the above. I really look forward to your visits, and I must admit I am bowled over by your comments. It was great fun to write, but as to "sending them in", I really wouldn't know where to start.

Nellie’s come and noticed a few typos and is going to put me to rights, and I guarantee that you have found all the wrong punctuation, but so long as you liked it, I'm a happy man.

About Bimbo, I had a donkey named Bimbo when I was a little boy, and you’ll find a picture of both Bimbo and me on my Hub on ‘Paranormal Phenomena’… It is as learned and erudite a dissertation on the matter as I am capable of. So don’t expect too much.

Ian

x


Nikkij504gurl profile image

Nikkij504gurl 5 years ago from Louisiana

What an interesting and cute childrens story! I wish I had read about the Adventures of Dulcie as a kid. What a surprise to see Tommy Lee Jones and a talking dog. I can also see a moral in here, not to take "candy" (any food) from strangers lol, as Dulcie always refused food from the people she met. I am glad that she got to the party finally.


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Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thanks, Nikki. Yes, I was also surprised about Tommy Lee Jones being in Camden, but I'm used to talking dogs. All of mine were fluent in Dog and also English. In fact, Zoki was excellent in Serbian as well.

Glad you liked the story, Just remember, when someone approaches you next time you are on Streatham Common, that it is wise not to accept candy bars from strangers, no matter how nicely they speak.


Nikkij504gurl profile image

Nikkij504gurl 5 years ago from Louisiana

haha will remember that. i dont accept food from any strangers lol. oh and are you the artist of the pics? Are you Ian Dorking-Clark? I only know your first name is Ian...


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Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

That's the one. I am the Ian in question.

I agree with the "Don't accept food from strangers, philosophy" but if the stranger wants to give me an intimate supper at the Ritz or the Waldorf, I think I might change my mind.


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Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

Well, accepting an invitation to dine at a fine restaurant doesn't carry the same risk as accepting food handed to one by a stranger, which might be poisoned or full of razor blades or thumbtacks, you see.

I also noticed how wise Dulcie was to avoid accepting any strange food, and did so with such graciousness. She never said anything rude, such as, "Phlew, no way, you're just trying to poison me!" No, no, - she always had the perfect excuse that she was waiting for the birthday party's refreshments, which made perfect sense. Even a stranger can understand a doggie's preference for lamb shanks at a birthday party to some tired snacks! So she was both prudent and kind. So typical of Dulcie!


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Dat's write, I brunged he up proper!


Lady Wordsmith profile image

Lady Wordsmith 5 years ago from Lancaster, UK

Now, I hope that you'll be using the English spellings of everything? ;)

I'll do your punctuation (of course I noticed), Nellie can do the spellings, as you said, and you can pretty it up, and Bob's your third cousin twice removed, ready to send in in no time.

I've got The Writers' and Artists' Yearbook - you can borrow it if you like. That'll tell you how to send something in.

Do you really know that you're writing's very good, or do you just pretend to know that it is? Because it is, you know!

Lx.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

You are so kind, Linda. I don't know if you realise (English spelling), but I am a pretty sensitive person, and apart from having to submit poetry and prose to our College Magazine when I was at Teachers' College, HP is the closest I have come to submitting anything. I would be devastated if someone said I wasn't very good.

By the way, did you like the picture of Bimbo? I hope you searched for him, He was the one not wearing paijama (Indian spelling).

Ha ha!


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Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Linda, I thought I was finished.

Apart from being a sensitive little soul, I am also very lazy... I would love a literary agent. Why don't you and Nellieanna set up a literary agency (?)? You could be in charge of the UK, and Nellieanna could do the Colonies.


Nellieanna profile image

Nellieanna 5 years ago from TEXAS

HAHAHA!


A.A. Zavala profile image

A.A. Zavala 5 years ago from Texas

Very sweet and endearing story. The illustrations, (Yes, Illustrations) were the perfect compliment to the story. Truly spellbinding.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Thank you, Augustine. As I have said, it was fun to write, and I thank you also for the kind comments concerning the illustrations.I like the word "perfect" used here.

Now beware, I may be scribbling even more on HP.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 5 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

OK. 'Lady Nellieanna-Linda Wordsmith plc', literary agents to the gentry on both sides of The Pond.

Look them up. They have already been associated with the judging and promotion of the Booker Prize. Persons of Quality are flocking to their doors (well, their servants and private secretaries are) with manuscripts and double spaced memoirs.


Angie Jardine profile image

Angie Jardine 4 years ago from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ...

Just loved this, TL ... and was utterly gob-smacked by the illustrations! You have been hiding your whatsit under a thingy, haven't you?

I bet if you showed these to Lettice she would give you some proper pencils - probably in Tom's shed if you feel up to it.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 4 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

Laughing in the most genteel manner at you comments.

Glad you liked the story. Great fun in doing it, but as much fun was derived from "hiding your whatsit under a thingy". You always had a wonderful control over the English Language, my friend.

I arksed Lettice about the 3Bs and the 6Bs and she said, "Bugger off!"


Angie Jardine profile image

Angie Jardine 4 years ago from Cornwall, land of the eternally youthful mind ...

That woman is no better than she should be! But to fair she has always had an aversion to soft ones ...


Jangaplanet profile image

Jangaplanet 4 years ago

It was nice reading this story. Your Illustrations are simply stunning as with everything else you write. I enjoyed reading all these fantastic comments written on your lens as well. Merits a vote up, and very well deserved indeed!


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Twilight Lawns 4 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

You are very kind, Jangaplanet. i have always liked drawing and I love words, but I have only tried my hand once at painting with oils. Water colours, and I paint like a child... everything turns out khaki.

My dalliance with oils was in your beautiful country, Italy, actually. I was on Lake Maggiore, and painted a little bit and as it worked out quite well, I thought. "This can only get worse," and left it at that.

And the comments were so encouraging,,, people are so kind. As are you.


Twilight Lawns profile image

Twilight Lawns 4 years ago from Norbury-sur-Mer, Surrey, England. U.K. Author

You are very kind, Jangaplanet. i have always liked drawing and I love words, but I have only tried my hand once at painting with oils. Water colours, and I paint like a child... everything turns out khaki.

My dalliance with oils was in your beautiful country, Italy, actually. I was on Lake Maggiore, and painted a little bit and as it worked out quite well, I thought. "This can only get worse," and left it at that.

And the comments were so encouraging,,, people are so kind. As are you.

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