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Dodie's Phenomenal Pheesic By Christine De Luca

'Dodie's Phenomenal Pheesic' by Christine De Luca (2008) Translation of Roald Dahl's 'George's Marvellous Medicine' into Shetland dialect

Maist grannies is fine, kindly, obligin aald weemen, but no Dodie's Granny. Shö’s horrid. Dodie maks up his mind ta mix a very speecial medicine ta lairn Granny a lesson. 

He kens he canna use onything oot o da medicine cabinet. But der plenty o idder stuff ida bathroom....

Da first een wis a bottle labelled GOLDEN GUB – HAIR SHAMPOO. He emptied hit inta da pan. ‘Dat owt ta wish her belly fine an clean,’ he said.

He took a foo tube o TEETHPAEST an birsed oot da hale lock o hit in wan lang wirm. ‘Maybe dat’ll brichten up yon horrid broon teeth o hers,’ he said.

Dey wir a aerosol can o SUPERFOAM SHAVIN SOPP belangin tae his faider. Dodie laekit playin wi aerosols. He pressed da button an keepit his finger apön hit till dey wir naethin left. A winderfil mountain o white froad biggit up i da giant pan.

Wi his fingers, he scoopit oot da contents o a jar o VITAMIN ENRICHED FACE CRAEM.

In gud a peerie bottle o scarlet NAIL VARNISH. ‘If da teethpaest disna clean her teeth,’ Dodie said, ‘dan dis’ll pent dem red as roses.’

He fan anidder jar o craemy stuff labelled HAIR REMOVER. KLINE HIT APÖN YOUR LEGS, hit said, AN LAEVE HIT FOR FIVE MEENITS. Dodie balled hit aa inta da pan.

Dey wir a bottle wi yalloo stuff athin hit caa’ed DISHWORTH’S FAMOUS DANDRUFF CURE. In hit gud.

Dey wir somethin caa’ed BRILLIDENT FOR CLEANIN FAAS TEETH. Hit wis a white pooder. In dat gud as weel.

He fan anidder aerosol can, NEVERMORE PONKIN DEODORANT SPRAY, GUARANTEED, hit said, TA KEEP AWA GUFFY BOADY SMELLS FOR A HALE DAY. ‘Shö could ös a braa coarn o dat,’ Dodie said as he sprayed da hale canfoo inta da pan.

LIQUID PARAFFIN, da neist een wis caa’ed. Hit wis a muckle bottle. He hedna a clue whit hit did tae you, but he poored hit in onywye. Dat, he tocht, luikin aroond him, wis aboot aa fae da bathroom.

On his midder’s dressin-table i da bedroom, Dodie fan yet anidder lovely aerosol can. Hit wis caa’ed HELGA’S HAIRSET. HADD TWAL INCHES AWA FAE DA HAIR AN SPRAY LICHTLY. He squirted da hale lock in ta da pan. He fairly enjoyed squirtin dis aerosols.

Dey wir a bottle o scent caa’ed FLOOERS O NEEPS. Hit stank o aald cheese. In hit gud.

An in, as weel, gud a muckle roond box o POODER. Hit wis caa’ed PINK PLESTER. Dey wir a pooder-puff apö da tap an he balled dat in an aa for luck.

He fan a couple o LIPSTICKS. He pooed da greesie red things oot o der peerie cases an plunkit dem i da mixter.

Da bedroom hed naethin mair ta offer, sae Dodie kyerried da grit muckle pan doonstair again an tippit trowe tae da back porch whaar da skelfs wis foo o aa kinda hoosehold gaer.

Da first een at he took doon wis a muckle box o SUPERWHITE FOR AUTOMATIC WISHIN-MACHINES. DIRT, hit said, ’LL DISAPPEAR LAEK MAGIC. Dodie didna ken whedder Granny wis automatic or no, but shö wis certainly a clerty aald wife. ‘Sae shö’d better hae hit aa,’ he said, ballin in da hale boxfoo.

Dan dey wir a muckle tinny o WAXWELL FLÖR POLISH. HIT REMOVES ELT AN FOUL MUCK FAE YOUR FLÖR AN LAEVES AATHIN SHEENY BRICHT,’ hit said. Dodie scoopit da orange-coloured waxy stuff oot o da tinny an plunkit hit athin da pan.

Dey wir a roond cairdboard box markit FLECH POODER FOR DUGS. KEEP WEEL AWA FAE DA DUG’S MAET, hit said, BECAAS DIS POODER, IF AETEN, ’LL MAK DA DUG EXPLOD. ‘Göd,’ said Dodie, poorin hit inta da pan.

He fan a box o CANARY SEED apö da skelf. ‘Maybe hit’ll mak da aald bird sing,’ he said, an in hit gud.

Neist, Dodie hunsed trowe da box wi shoe-cleanin gaer – brushes an tinnies an cloots. Weel noo, he towt, Granny’s pheesic is broon, sae my pheesic man be broon an aa or shö’ll smell a rat. Da wye ta colour hit, he wrocht oot, wid be wi BROON SHOE-POLISH. Da muckle tinny he waeled oot wis markit DARK TAN. Speecial. He scoopit hit aa oot wi an aald spön an plunkit hit inta da pan. He wid steer hit up later on.

On his wye back tae da but-end, Dodie saa a bottle o GIN staandin apö da dresser. Granny wis braaly fond o gin. Shö wis allooed ta hae a peerie aer o hit every nicht. Noo he wid gie her a treat. He wid poor in da hale bottle. He did.

Back i da but-end, Dodie pat da muckle pan apö da table an gud ower tae da press dey ösed as a larder. Da skelfs wis stappit wi bottles an jars o ivery sort. He waeled da followin an emptied dem wan eftir da tidder inta da pan:


‘Dere!’ he said alood. ‘Dat sood dö hit!’

‘Dodie!’ cam da voice sprechin fae da neist room. ‘Wha’s du sheeksin tae in yondroo? Whit’s du up tae?’

‘Naethin, Granny, absolutely naethin,’ he shoutit back.

‘Is hit time for my pheesic yet?’

‘No, Granny, no for aboot a half oor.’

‘Weel, jöst see du disna firyat hit.’

‘I winna, Granny,’ Dodie answered. ‘I promise I winna.’

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