The Kallerbay Stories 10-12
By Frances Fahy
Kallerbay was conceived as a short story project for 6 – 11 year-olds, written in a first-person child-related style and the “storytellers” are a class of 25 children in this age bracket. In an uncomplicated environment, we follow the adventures of 25 schoolboys and girls in the fictional sea-side town of Kallerbay where life is adventurous and often exciting. Under the guidance of their teacher, Miss Emerson, each pupil tells a story about family, friends, neighbours, joys and fears. The country location is not mentioned. It’s an anglophile Fantasy Land. It’s where the child wants it to be!
This page contains three more Kallerbay stories. New stories will be posted as time goes on and linked from the preceding stories. Depending when you read this, you may find those links already there or not. To go back to the first Kallerbay stories, and follow along in sequence, click here.
by Evanna Hunter aged 10
Hi! I’m Evanna, and I’d like to tell a story about my dog, Lucky. He’s a Labrador retriever, and he’s a guide dog. That’s because I’m blind. I’m one of the youngest people to have a guide dog because my father got me a dog when I was four so that I could learn how to control him and then I could have more freedom. Lucky is fantastic, and he’s always beside me. My brother Billy sometimes helps me to feed him, and the best thing is that I’m allowed to take him to school with me. He stays even closer to me when I’m at school because there are so many kids running around and shouting and I think he might be a bit worried that something could happen to me if he wasn’t right there.
When I started school, I already had Lucky. His trainer came into the school and spoke to the pupils. He explained the rules they must follow if Lucky is in the classroom. He said they mustn’t pet, feed or call Lucky and he made them repeat the rule over and over.
When I was young, my trainer always took me to the park to teach us how to work together. So we put a little cover on Lucky with the three don’t rules on it, and that worked. Sometimes people want to help me, like on the street, but they’re not supposed to do that because it upsets Lucky. My trainer says they’re doing more harm than good. Some people say I should go to a special school for the blind, but my parents think I’m much happier at home and I’m learning faster. Maybe when I’m bigger, I’d like to give it a try.
I go to normal school every day and every Tuesday and Thursday I go to a special room for kids like me who have problems with learning and moving about. There are only four blind people in Kallerbay and they’re all older than me. I’ve learned to read Braille and it’s nice. I can read quite fast now and I use the PC to download music and to find stuff that I can hear on screen reader. My friends at school say my cell is cool and some of them want to know how to use it.
Billy is always telling me what things are like, especially when we’re going along in the car but sometimes I don’t know what he’s talking about! I don’t tell him that though! The teacher, too, tells me what the other kids are looking at like when they’re watching a video. She often makes me go round the school doing different things to make sure I can fathom it all out. She says everything I do must be age-appropriate. I think she means I must do things that sighted kids my age do.
I’m learning new things now with Lucky. Like using a cane or stopping when there’s an obstacle that is overhead like a branch or an open window. Lucky has to be trained to take me to the obstacle and stop. Then I tap the obstacle and say “no”. It takes a long time for us to learn new things but I always praise Lucky no matter how many errors we make. Or at the traffic lights, people think Lucky moves when the light is green. But he doesn’t. He watches the traffic and when it stops we go. When I’m 14, I’ll learn how to travel alone on the bus or on the train with Lucky. I’m learning how to play the guitar now and I love it. Lucky loves it too!
Bye now! The next story is by Katy Hill. I think she’s six.
My new Auntie
by Katy Hill aged 6
My brother George told me that when my birthday comes Mummy won’t be here for it. We’ll go for a long walk in the hills, George said, cos Mummy always took us there. But now she’s gone away. I don’t know when she’ll come back. George said never cos she’s dead but I think she will. I can’t remember her smell any more, but I remember her face cos we have lots of videos and Zoe just watches them and watches them.
We might take Mr Hunter’s dog for a long walk. He’s Mr Bill Hunter because there’s another Mr Hunter called Joe who has a supermarket. Mr Bill cleans our school. He’s got this crazy dog and Dad says he has to run a lot because he’s too fat. Like our Zoe. Zoe is my big sister. She doesn’t like walking. She just likes watching TV or listening to music. Dad sometimes turns it off and then she sulks and goes to her room and plays games on her cell phone. She never plays with me. He often takes her with him when he goes to work.
I like when people read me stories and Dad sometimes reads me a story. Zoe says no when I ask her. I think she doesn’t like reading. My favourite story is Charlie and Lola. Charlie always talks about Lola and she’s very funny and he talks about his Mummy and she’s not in the pictures.
My dad is a vet and he says a vet is like a doctor for sick animals. We have a special place for the sick pets and it’s smelly in there and Dad often goes to people’s farms to make their cows and their sheep better. But sometimes he can’t make them better and they die.
I think my new Auntie is coming to see us soon. Her name is Stefy. She came one day and she speaks funny. Zoe said she’s horrible but I don’t think she is. She’s very pretty actually and she told me I’m pretty too. When she came, she wanted to see all the rooms and everything and she said it was lovely and she said she’s love to go for a walk on the beach and she asked us to go.
George and I went but Zoe stayed at home and while we were gone she went into Mum and Dad’s room and she smashed the photos of Mum that were on the table. When Dad saw what she’d done he didn’t scold her at all and he hugged her which was strange. I thought it was a very naughty thing to do. Like something Lola did in one of the stories. When I said that she just banged the door.
I think Stefy will bring us presents. I hope Zoe doesn’t break any more photos or tell me to get out of the room. I think I’ll move into George’s room soon. He’s more fun, a little bit.
I’m learning to ride my bike without stabilisers, like a big person. My friend Flo is learning too.
I went to the Workshop one day when we had no school. It’s a place we can all go to if we want to do things in our spare time. It was nice because Uma was having her birthday party there. Her mum was there too and she has a big tummy cos there’s a baby inside. Libby’s mum has a baby in her tummy too but she wasn’t at the party. When Uma had to blow out the candles she started to cry and I went up and helped her to blow them out. I took her hand and she stopped crying. There was a lady there who was organising games and we danced and played Statues and then we came home.
My friend Libby brought her dog to the party and he kept on barking because she tied his leash to a pole.
Mr Hunter said: “Can I give him a bit of bread Libby, maybe he’s hungry:”
But she said: “He’s fine.”
Dad was talking to Mr Greenwood and then he came over and he said:
“Hi, Libby!” He knows Libby cos her dad has the pub and everyone knows him.
“Hi Mr Hill,” she said.
“I think Jasper is not very happy.”
“He’s fine,” she said again. Jasper was whining as if he knew we were talking about him.
“No, he said he doesn’t like being here. Maybe I can take him for a run.” My dad was looking at the dog.
“He didn’t SAY anything,” she said in a huffy voice.
“Oh! Yes, he did,” Dad said. “He said that he has a pain in his tummy.”
“Really?” said Libby. “Can you understand him?”
“I can indeed. So, what do you say Jasper and I go for a short run on the beach?”
Mr Greenwood and three other dads went too, and Uma was so happy. She was afraid to tell Libby not to have her dog inside and I was glad Mr Hunter didn’t have to send her home. He would too. He doesn’t like pets in the Workshop.
Zoe said that Libby brings her dog everywhere because she thinks it’s cool and Nat Norris has a dog too and she wants to be like him. When my birthday comes I’ll tell her she can’t bring her dog to my party. No, I have a better idea, we won’t have a party. We’ll all just go to the hills for a long walk like George said. And George is always right.
Oh! I have to say that the next story is by Nat Norris.
Told by Nat Norris aged 10
Hi! My name is Nat Norris. I’m 10. I have an older brother Brendan who’s 15 and a little sister Sadie who’s 4. So I’m the middle child. Sometimes my mother remarks about me being the middle child, just like she is, in a way that makes me feel she wishes I wasn’t. I don’t know what she means. She just comes out with “Huh! Middle child syndrome” from time to time as if I was sick or something. My mum is Australian. Maybe that’s why she says weird things that don’t make sense.
One day she was talking to her own mum on her computer as she does very often. They have a video connection. It’s like as if my granny is permanently propped up on a stool in her kitchen in front of her computer and that her head is permanently in our kitchen. As usual we all went over and said hello. She likes us to tell her what we’re doing and how we’re getting on at school and stuff.
Then she said that she wanted to ask Brendan something. He wasn’t actually interested in talking to Granny but he said ‘I’m here Granny’. And she lobbed this bomb right into the room.
‘I was thinking Brendan that maybe you’d like to come to Australia for your summer.’
He was completely stunned and looked at Mum. She didn’t look surprised so they must have been talking about it. I just got so angry that she’d asked him but I didn’t say anything. So I bent down and whispered to Sadie who was sitting on the floor playing with her dolls:
“Brendan is going to Australia and he’ll never come back and you’ll never see him again.”
She looked at me for a minute. Then she got up and climbed up on Mum’s lap and looked at the screen just as Granny was saying:
“So you’ll come, won’t you Brendan. I’ll see to your fare.”
And Brendan said: “I’d love to come Granny.”
Sadie started to scream at the top of her voice. Mum thought she’d hurt herself and Granny was saying ‘What’s happened?’ and I didn’t pretend I knew. Mum started hugging Sadie who was shaking and trying to kick Brendan.
“No, Australia, no Australia,”
Granny in Australia could hear all the fuss and her squeaky voice was coming over with lots of static.
“What’s wrong, Sybil, Answer me.”
Brendan was about to punch me in the face and I started to scream too. “Mum, Brendan is hitting me.”
Sadie was still choking on “No Australia.”
Just then Dad came in the door. As if by magic, the screaming and shouting stopped. Sadie looked at him and jumped into his arms, her Australia thing totally forgotten.
Mum said to Granny: “Everything’s fine. Talk later.”
And she closed the screen and poor Granny disappeared. She gave Dad a peck on the cheek.
Brendan said: “Hi Dad, have to talk to you about summer.”
While we were having dinner, Dad said. “So I think I missed something. What was the screaming match all about?”
Mum just tussled my hair and said. “Our middle child had a mild dose of MCS.”
“What’s MCS?” asked Sadie.
“Just something special that Nat and I share. We were born with it. Isn’t that right Nat?”
“Yeah, whatever,” I mumbled
“It sure would be boring round here without you two and your syndrome,” said Dad, pretending to cry.
I couldn’t keep a straight face any longer and we laughed all the way through dinner.
The next story is by Omar Bild’s sister Megan. She’s a bit of a pest! She’s eight I think.
Bye everybody, especially kids with MCS!
We continue next time with stories 13, 14, 15 of The Kallerbay Stories.
- Megan Bild May Day at the Castle. Kallerbay Castle turns magic on 1st May
- Libby Tomkinson The Space Ship. Libby describes a lovely school project
- Tom Bernard The Sack Race. Tom and Hilda win a race on Sports Day