It’s not Christmas without a story by Averil Cawthera-Purdy

Created: 15/12/2011

A LITTLE early I know but this is the last YHIS before Christmas and so happy Christmas to readers young and old! Enjoy the festive holiday and if you are the sort of addict who shows over Christmas as well, good luck.
Of course it wouldn’t be Christmas without the YHIS Christmas story, provided this year by one of the longest standing of my readers. I hope you enjoy it:

Fly Goes Back to Work

I watched Mike pull a suitcase out of the cupboard with some trepidation. “It’s OK,” he said. “You’re going too.” I am Fly, a Spaniel of the kind they call Springer, and I’m a retired sniffer dog. Well, I’m not really retired – I’m only three, and I’m afraid I got sacked. I’ll tell you how:
Mike and I were on duty at an airport in arrivals, when suddenly I noticed the most gorgeous smell. It wasn’t the usual smell I get rewarded for at all, but it was novel, exciting and tickled all my senses. I soon discovered it came from an elderly lady, very elegant indeed. I went and sat down in front of her, as I’d been taught, and she reached down and scratched me behind the ears. That did it – with a smell like that and so friendly, I was her slave for life. So when she collected her bag, I followed at her heels. Of course, the customs people took her off, protesting loudly, but then, they all do that. But she was ‘clean’, no explosives or anything so they had to let her go, in spite of my behaviour. She just laughed at it all, and said she had been judging on the Continent, and one of the bitches must have been in season and I could still smell that! So I was sacked, because they said I was too easily distracted from my real job.
It didn’t matter much, as Mike, my boss, who is busy training a new dog, and Jenny, his wife, loved me so much they kept me just as a pet, and spoil me to bits.  One night they took me with them to this big dance.  I knew it was a ‘big do’, because Jenny packed Mike’s dinner jacket and an evening dress. I had a brand new blanket, too, because the hotel didn’t have beds for dogs, so they took mine with them.
And so we arrived at the hotel. And, my goodness, it’s posh – very posh! There are lots of men in green top hats to carry your luggage and park your car. They even carried my bed! And the smells! I can identify roast turkey and sausages at a hundred yards! Jenny is delighted with our room… It has an enormous bed big enough for 20 Springers to sleep on, though I know that’s not allowed – it’s for Mike and Jenny. But there’s plenty of room for my bed, and I can understand why my old dog-eaten blanket just wouldn’t do for here!  Jenny says that in the bathroom, where I’m not allowed, there is a ‘Jack Oozy’ I hope it doesn’t mean there’s a leak somewhere.


She looks super, too, in a shimmery blue dress, but it’s only got one sleeve. That worried Mike, too. We thought perhaps she’d torn the other one, but Jenny assured us it was meant. Mike looks good too in his DJ. Eventually he said, “Fly!  Bed and stay!  We’ll feed you and take you for a walk when we get back.” And off they went. They’d left the telly on low, so I wouldn’t feel lonely, and I settled down for a kip.
But long before I expected them, Mike was back, looking very flustered. “Come on, Fly,” he said. “There’s work for you to do.” Apparently police had arrived, and they were looking for some suspected terrorists, who’d gate-crashed the dance and possibly left a bomb. Mike had said his retired sniffer dog would help them – gosh!  I was proud and rushed to the rescue. I soon sussed out the culprits, as they still had the explosives on them and even if they were all dressed up in DJs to look as if they belonged it was easy for me to find them.
The police clapped on the cuffs and took them away in a van, but first they petted me and told me what a super dog I was. And the hotel sent up a big dish full of turkey and sausages, just for me, as a reward, and I was allowed to stay downstairs in sit/stay and watch the dancing. My self-esteem grew enormously – I can still do the job properly, even if I was sacked! Perhaps, when they hear about my skill, they’ll re-instate me! Perhaps that should be my new year’s wish.