Mungo had to use his
imagination each week to come up with stories for the bairns. He liked to
do different types of things and make learning a fun experience for them.
The bairns loved Mungo and he loved them too. "Where did I put my keys?"
he said to Ginger, his cat. "I’m always losing things, aren’t I, girl?"
DING DONG! "Hello, Mr.
McGee," Gregor said, opening the door before Mungo could get to it. "Can I
"Certainly, come in lad.
Help yourself to the sandwiches while I look for my keys," Mungo said.
"Can I help you?" Gregor
DING DONG! "Get the door,
would you, lad. Let the others in."
Gregor opened the door. Wee
Fiona, Gavin, Morag, Andy and wee Hamish were all there. "Mr. McGee’s lost
his keys," Gregor said.
"We’ll help you find them,"
wee Fiona offered.
The bairns lifted up the
cushions to the couches. There were no keys there. They looked under the
chairs. There were no keys there either. "Bairns, let’s not worry about
them right now then. We’ll find them later on," Mungo told them. "Come on,
eat something and then we’ll begin the story."
The bairns gobbled down the
sandwiches and were ready for the night’s story. "Now, where has my book
gone?" Mungo asked. He stood up and searched for his book. "Everything’s
turning up missing tonight. I don’t understand it. First it was my watch
and then my keys and now the book. What we need is a detective!"
"A detective?" wee Hamish
asked. "What’s that?"
"It’s someone who solves
clues and puzzles," said Morag.
"My mum does puzzles," said
wee Fiona. "She does the crossword in the newspaper every night."
"Not that kind of puzzle,"
said Gavin, laughing at his younger sister. "Mr. McGee means its someone
who finds lost things or missing people."
"I lost my homework once,"
"Do you bairns know who was
the greatest detective of all time?" Mungo asked.
"No," said wee Hamish.
"It was Sherlock Holmes,
but he wasn’t real. A man named Arthur Conan Doyle created Sherlock
Holmes. He was born in Edinburgh. He loved mysteries and had a vivid
imagination," Mungo explained.
"What did Sherlock Holmes
do?" asked Andy.
"He solved murders and many
other things," Mungo answered. "The man that caused Sherlock Holmes the
most aggravation was called Moriarty. He was a villain."
"What’s a villain?" asked
"He was a bad man. Mr.
Holmes had many adventures and Arthur Conan Doyle created them all," Mungo
"Tell us one of his
stories? What were they called?" Gavin asked, curiously.
"One of his most famous
stories was called ‘The Hound of Baskervilles’. Did you know Mr. Doyle
believed in fairies?" Mungo asked.
"Fairies?" asked Gregor.
"You mean the kind with wings that fly around, like Tinkerbell from Peter
"Yes, he believed in
‘little people’. I think it helped him with his imagination. Now, why
don’t we become detectives for the night and find my watch, my keys and
the book, so I can read you a story. Let’s look at the clues. First of
all, where did I put my watch? When was the last time I saw it?"
"Where were you then, Mr.
McGee?" asked Gregor.
"I was in the kitchen. I
was ready to wash the dishes and took off my watch. When I finished
washing them, I turned around and my watch was gone. That’s a good place
to start." They went into the kitchen and searched everywhere. There was
no sign of Mungo’s keys. "This is very unusual. I wonder where it went?"
"What about your keys?"
asked Morag. "Where did you last see them?"
"When I came home from the
market, I put them on the wee table near the front door. After I unloaded
the groceries and went back into the living room, the keys were gone. Very
unusual!" Mungo said.
"What about your book?"
"I set the book down on the
table next to my reading chair. I remember doing that. When I went to read
to you bairns, it wasn’t there. My, this is strange indeed."
"Let’s all look in
different places and find Mr. McGee’s things," Gavin suggested.
The bairns each took a room
and started looking for the three missing items. Suddenly Gregor started
laughing. "I found them," he giggled. The others ran into the bedroom.
"Ginger has them in her basket."
Ginger meowed. "Ginger?
Girl? You took my watch, my keys and the book?" He reached into the basket
and picked them up. "How on earth did you drag the book in here?" He
petted his cat.
"That’s funny, Mr. McGee. A
catnapper," laughed Morag.
The other bairns laughed
too. "All right now. We’ve found the book. Let’s go and read that story,"
Mungo suggested. They spent the next half hour listening to one of their
DING DONG! "It’s our mums
and dads," wee Hamish said. He ran over and opened the door. He was very
anxious to tell his mum and dad about the mystery of the missing keys,
watch and book and how it was the cat who had stolen them.
"Good night," Mungo said as
the last one walked down the path. He sat down in his chair with Ginger on
his lap. "We’ll have no more of that thievery," he said, petting her
softly. "I’m no Sherlock Holmes," he laughed. Ginger meowed and then
purred. Mungo laughed again and lay back and shut his eyes. The bairns
would remember this night for a long time. So would he.