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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
Tavish Goes To the Orchard

Tavish Goes To the Orchard

Tavish ran around the back garden, wagging his tail. "What are you so excited about?" his master, Niall asked. "Weíre only going to pick apples."

Tavish licked Niallís hands. He loved going to the orchard. The only time he ever got to go was in autumn, during apple picking season. Niall carried a large, golden-colored bucket and headed towards the trees. "Come on, boy. Letís pick some apples." Tavish barked and ran around in circles, nearly knocking Niall to the ground.

"Look at all these apples. Theyíre so red and beautiful and Iím sure they are juicy and crisp too. Why donít you go exploring and Iíll do the picking," Niall said. Tavish didnít need any encouragement. He bounded into the trees to see what surprises he could find.

His nose was twitching as he sniffed all the new smells. Tavish loved the smell of ripe apples. A few lay on the ground. He nudged one with his nose. A plump worm came crawling out and looked at the dog. Tavish tried to bite the worm but it crawled back into the rotting apple.

A grasshopper hopped past. Tavish chased it as it jumped from tree to tree. BOING! BOING! BOING! It landed right on his wet, black nose. Tavish tried to lick it off with his tongue but it bounced away into the orchard.

He saw three squirrels up in the top of a tree. They were afraid of Tavish. They werenít used to having a dog running around the orchard. Tavish barked at them, but they only climbed higher. BONK! An apple fell and landed right on Tavishís head. He looked at the apple and bit into it with his sharp teeth. Apple juice squirted into his eyes. Shaking his head, he ripped a piece of the apple off and chewed it up.

"Tavish. Here boy," Niall called. Tavish started barking and ran towards his master. "Iíve filled this bucket up. Thatís enough for today. Did you have a good time running around?"

Tavish wagged his tail. As he was sniffing the bucket of red apples, he spotted a bluebird sitting on a branch. He hopped up onto the bucket and started barking at the bird. "Leave it alone, boy. Itís only a bluebird. If youíre quiet, it might sing you a song. Get off the bucket apples," Niall ordered.

Tavish jumped down. He and Niall stood quietly, listening as the bluebird began to chirp a melody. "What did I tell you, Tavish. Leave the animals alone and enjoy them. Now, letís go home and Iíll make us an apple pie or two."

Tavish barked and ran around as the two of them headed for home and some apple pie.

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