Stuart was so small that it was often
difficult to find him in the house. When his father, his mother or his brother
George could not find him, they had to call him. You could often hear
somebody's cry: "Stuart! Stu-oo-art!" Very often you entered the dining-room,
and he was in an arm-chair, and you couldn't see him. Mr. Little was always
afraid to lose him. He even made him a tiny red cap, such as hunters wear, and
this cap helped all the family to find Stuart.
One day when he was seven years old,
his mother said: "Today I shall make a pudding for dinner!" And Stuart went to
the kitchen after her. He was very hungry and when Mrs. Little opened the door
of the electric refrigerator, he slipped inside it. He hoped to find a piece
of cheese. He did not say a word to his mother, but he was greatly surprised
2 when she closed the door and left him inside the
refrigerator. "Hasn't Mother seen me?" he thought. "Why has she closed the
door? That must be a joke!" But then he was frightened.
"Help!" he shouted. "It's dark here!
It's cold here! Help! Let me out! I'm cold!" 3
But his voice was weak and his mother
did not hear him. In the darkness he fell into a saucer of applesauce. It was
cold as ice. Stuart trembled, and his teeth chattered. Only half an hour later
4 Mrs. Little opened the door again and found Stuart on a
piece of butter hopping up and down and blowing on his hands. 5
she cried. "My poor little boy!"
"How about a glass of brandy?"
6 said Stuart. "I'm chilled to the bone." 7
But his mother made him some hot broth
instead and put him to bed in his cigarette box and placed a small hot-water
bottle against his feet. 8 However, Stuart caught a bad cold.
9 He had to stay in bed for almost two weeks.
During his illness the other members
of the family were very kind to Stuart. Mrs. Little played with him. George
made him a soap bubble pipe 10 and a bow and arrow. Mr.
Little made him a pair of skates out of two paper clips.
One cold afternoon Mrs. Little looked
out of the window and saw a small bird on the window-sill. At first she
thought it was dead, but then she decided to bring the bird into the warm room
and put it near the radiator. She did so, and what do you think? Soon the bird
opened her eyes. It was a pretty little brown bird with a yellow breast. Mrs.
Little found a place for her in the dining-room, and fed her, and gave her a
cup of water. Soon the bird felt much better and began to hop around the house
and look at everything with great interest. At last she hopped upstairs and
into Stuart's room. Stuart was still in bed.
"Hello," he said. "Who are you? Where
did you come from?"
"My name is Margalo," said the bird in
a musical voice. "I come from fields 11 once tall with
wheat, 12 from pastures deep in fern and thistle;
13 I come from vales of meadow-sweet, 14
and I love to whistle."
Stuart sat up in bed. "Say that
again!" he said.
"I can't," said Margalo. "I have a
sore throat." 15
"So have I," 16 said
Stuart. "Don't come near me, you may catch it." 17
"I'll stay here near the door," said
"You can take my medicine if you
want," said Stuart. "And my nose drops too."
"Thank you very much, you are very
kind," said the bird.
"Did they take your temperature? "
18 asked Stuart.
"No," said Margalo, "but I don't think
it is necessary."
"Well, we must be sure,"
19 said Stuart, and he gave her the thermometer. Margalo put it under her
tongue, and she and Stuart sat very still for three minutes. Then she took it
out and looked at it.
"Normal," she said. Stuart was very
glad to hear it. He liked this bird very much, she was so beautiful.
"I hope," he said, "that my parents
have prepared you a nice bed?"
yes," Margalo said. "I am going to sleep in the fern on the bookshelf in the
dining-room. You have a nice house. And now, if you'll excuse me, I shall go
to bed. It is getting dark outside. 20 I always go to bed at
sundown. Good night, sir!"
"Please don't call me 'sir'," cried
Stuart. "Call me Stuart."
"Very well," said the bird. "Good
night, Stuart!" And she hopped off.
"Good night, Margalo," cried Stuart.
"See you in the morning!" 21
Stuart lay down again.
"This is a very nice bird," he
whispered and sighed.
1 Margalo — Маргало (имя
2 he was greatly
surprised — он очень удивился
3 Let me out! I'm
cold! — Выпустите меня! Мне холодно!
4 Only half an hour
later — Только полчаса спустя
5 found Stuart ...
hopping up and down and blowing on his hands — увидела, что Стюарт... прыгает
и дует себе на лапки
6 How about a glass of
brandy? — Как насчет стаканчика бренди?
7 I'm chilled to the
bone.. — Я промерз до костей.
8 placed a small
hot-water bottle against his feet — положила ему к ногам грелочку
9 caught a bad cold —
схватил сильную простуду
10 soap bubble pipe —
трубочка для пускания мыльных пузырей
11 I come from
fields... - Моргало отвечает на вопрос Стюарта известным стихотворением о
12 once tall with
wheat - на которых колыхалась когда-то высокая пшеница
13 deep in fern and
thistle - густо заросших папоротником и чертополохом
14 vales of
meadow-sweet - долины, поросшие таволгой (луговое растение с белыми душистыми
15 I have a sore
throat. — У меня болит горло.
16 So have I — И у
17 you may catch it —
вы можете заразиться
18 Did they take your
temperature? — Вам измерили температуру?
19 Well, we must be
sure - В общем, нужно проверить
20 It is getting dark outside. —
На улице темнеет.
21 See you (= I shall see you) in
the morning! — Увидимся утром!