Victor dragunsky — the adventures of dennis

Victor Dragunsky

THE ADVENTURES OF DENNIS

Translated by Fainna Glagoleva

THINGS I LIKE…
I like to lie on my stomach, slung over Daddy's knee, with my arms and legs dangling like wash on a line. I like to play chess, checkers and dominoes, but only if I win. If don't, I don't.
I like to listen to a beetle scratching inside a box. And on Sundays I like to crawl into bed beside Daddy so we can talk about our dog. As soon as we move to a bigger apartment we're going to buy a dog and train it, and feed it, and it'll be a very intelligent and bouncy dog, and it'll steal lump sugar, and I'll wipe up all its puddles, and it'll follow me around like a devoted dog.
I also like to watch TV, no matter what the program's about. I like to breathe into Mommy's ear. But most of all I like to sing, and I always sing very loudly.
I love stories about Red Army cavalrymen who always win their battles.
I like to stand in front of the mirror and make faces like a Punch and Judy show. I also like sardines.
I like to read stories about Kanchil. Kanchil is a small, smart, naughty gazelle with quick eyes and tiny horns, and shiny pink hooves. When we move to a bigger apartment we'll buy a gazelle, and it'll live in the bathroom.
I like to swim where it's shallow so I can hold onto the sandy bottom.
At parades I like to wave a little red flag and blow a tinhorn.
I like to call people up on the telephone.
I like to hammer and saw, and I can make clay heads of warriors and bisons. I also made a clay wood grouse and a big cannon. I like to give everything I make away as gifts.
I like to chew on something when I read.
I like company.
I also love grass snakes, lizards and frogs. They're so quick. Whenever I catch one I carry it around in my pocket. I like to keep a grass snake on the table when I'm having lunch. I like to hear Gran scream: "Take that disgusting thing away!" and then dash out of the kitchen.
I like to laugh. Sometimes I don't feel like laughing at all, but I make myself laugh. I force myself to, and before you know it, everything really does seem funny.
I like to hop and skip when I'm feeling good. One day Daddy and I went to the Zoo, and I was hopping and skipping around him on the street.
"What's this all about?" he said.
"I'm skipping because you're my daddy!"
He understood.
I like to go to the Zoo. There are wonderful elephants there. And a baby elephant, too. When we move to a bigger apartment we'll buy a baby elephant. I'll build him a garage.
I like to stand in back of a car when the motor's running and smell the gasoline fumes.
I like to go to an ice cream parlor and eat ice cream and drink soda pop. The pop sends prickles up my nose and makes my eyes tear.
When I run down the hall I like to stamp my feet and make as much noise as I can.
I love horses, because they have such kind and beautiful faces. I like so many things!

… AND THINGS I DON'T

If there's anything I hate it's going to the dentist. As soon as I see the dentist's chair I feel like zooming off to the other end of the world. I also hate having to stand up on a chair and recite when we have company.
I don't like the times Mommy and Daddy go to the theater.
I hate a soft-boiled egg that's broken into a cup and has bread crumbled into it and then I have to eat it.
I don't like the days on which we meet Aunt Rita when Mommy and I go out for a walk. They start talking and I never know what to do.
I don't like to wear my new suit, because it makes me feel so stiff.