Gordon woke up one
morning feeling sad. He didn't know why, but his heart felt heavy
and nothing would make him smile. "I don't want to go to school
today. I want to stay in bed. I feel sad." When his mum came
through to get him up and ready, Gordon rolled over onto his tummy
and buried his head under the pillow. "I don't want to go, Mum.
Leave me alone."
His mum left the room and
went to talk to Gordon's dad. "I'm not sure what's wrong with
Gordon. He's not happy at all today. I wonder if he's sick. Should
I take him to the doctor?"
"Let me go and talk to him,"
Dad said. He went into Gordon's room. "What's the matter, son? Are
you feeling sick?"
"I don't know what's wrong,
Dad. I feel sad today. I feel like I want to cry." Gordon felt
tears building up behind his eyes.
"I'm sorry to hear that. I
think it will be all right if you stay home today with your mum.
Maybe you can go for a walk or help her bake a cake." Dad leaned
over and kissed Gordon on the forehead. "I'm off to work, but call
me if you want to talk."
Gordon's mum let him lie in
bed for a while. She tried to think of why Gordon would be feeling
sad today. Nothing came to her mind. After she'd written in her
journal, she went to wake Gordon up. "Come on, sleepy head. We're
going for a walk."
Gordon didn't want to get
up, but his mum didn't give him a choice. He took a few bites of
his cereal and then they left.
As they walked down the
street, his mum pointed some things out to him. "Gordon, do you
see the roses in Mr. Butler's garden? Aren't they lovely. Would
you like to smell them?"
"No." Gordon hung his head.
"I want to. Come with me."
His mum sniffed the flowers. "Oh, these are lovely smelling. I
love roses. They are my favorite flower. Are you sure you don't
want to sniff them?" Gordon shook his head no. They walked on.
"Look, Gordon. See the
bluebirds. Their feathers are different from every other bird. It
looks like some of the sky fell on their feathers." Gordon glanced
up, but didn't smile. They walked on.
"Gordon! There are Billy's
puppies. Oh, they're adorable." His mum opened the gate and pulled
Gordon inside. The puppies ran up to him and licked his legs.
"They want you to pet them, Gordon." She sat in the grass and the
puppies licked her face. She giggled and the puppies barked tiny
barks. "Their fur is so soft and fluffy. Maybe we should get a
puppy." When Gordon didn't react, they walked on.
"Doesn't an ice cream cone
sound good? I love ice cream. My favorite is chocolate banana
walnut caramel peanut butter marmalade mustard ice cream. What's
A smile in the corner of
Gordon's mouth brought joy to his mother's heart.
"Maybe I'd rather have a
pickle vanilla blueberry onion pistachio raspberry orange lemon
mud ice cream cone." She saw the smile again; this time it was
"No! I've got it. I want a
rubber duckie, dinosaur, cheesecake ripple, coconut shell, sea
shell, dirty socks, plum ice cream cone." She looked over at
Gordon. "Doesn't that sound good?"
Gordon burst out laughing.
"Don't be so silly, Mum. That sounds horrible. You can't have that
kind of ice cream cone."
"Oh yeah? Who says so? Let's
go into the store and see what sort of ice cream there is." They
went inside. His mum looked at the menu. She said to the girl
behind the counter, "Where's your dirty sock ice cream?"
Gordon grinned. "Where's
your mustard ice cream?"
"No, no, no, Gordon. Where
is your double fudge, triple garlic, sesame seed, curry ice cream
with pizza topping?"
Gordon laughed and laughed.
The girl behind the counter
looked at them like they were crazy.
"All right. I'll settle for
a peach ice cream in a bowl with lots of caramel and hot fudge
sauce," Mum said.
"I'll have a chocolate swirl
ice cream with whipping cream and a cherry on top." Gordon licked
They sat at the table and
ate their ice cream. On the way home, Gordon wanted to stop and
play with Billy's puppies. He let them lick his ears and cheeks.
They stopped to sniff Mr. Butler's roses. Gordon took ten sniffs.
When they got home, Gordon and his mum played games and watched a
movie on television. When Gordon's dad pulled up in the driveway,
Gordon ran out to tell him about their day and how much fun he
had. "That's great, Gordon. Now you and I can play a game of
Gordon's mum stood at the
window watching them play. She felt much happier now that Gordon