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Big Jobs, Small Jobs

One morning, Hank was on his way to Old Buzz Village with some scrap. He was working on clearing out the Junk Yard. The job was nearly done. As he approached the harbour entrance, Emily came towards him. “Morning Hank,” she said cheerfully. “The Dispatcher wants me to help you finish cleaning out the Junk Yard.” “Oh thank you Emily,” said Hank excitedly, “I could use some help.” Emily blew his whistle and went to the Junk Yard, and Hank left for Old Buzz Village.

At the Junk Yard Emily looked at the remaining docks filled with scrap. “I should probably take the bigger pieces of scrap,” she thought as she examined the docks. At last she found an old container ship. She buttoned onto it and set off for Old Buzz Village.

At Old Buzz Villiage she saw Sammy, who was unloading a ship. Emily watched with surprise as the ship left without a tugboat. “Do ships leave this harbour without tugboats?” she asked Sammy. “Course they do,” said Sammy kindly. Then he realized he didn’t know Emily. “My name’s Sammy, what’s yours?” “I’m Emily. Nice to meet you.” Once the container ship was tied to the dock Emily set off for the Junk Yard as Sammy began to lower his hook to raise the ship out of the water.

As she came to the harbour entrance of the Big Harbour, she saw Hank pulling an old barrage. “Leave the heavy things for me,” she said proudly. “I’m a strong tugboat.” When Hank heard this he frowned. “I’m a strong tugboat too,” he protested. He was beginning to wish that Emily wasn’t helping him.

That evening the Junk Yard had been cleared. At the Great Ocean Tug and Salvage Dock the Dispatcher was waiting for them. “Excellent work today,” he praised. Emily smiled. But Hank wasn’t smiling. He just went to his side of the dock, pulled down his hat, and went to sleep.

The following day the Dispatcher was giving out jobs at the morning work meeting. “Emily, you’ll be pulling Guysbrough and collecting garbage,” he said. Emily frowned. “That’s a small job for a small tugboat,” she thought. The Dispatcher had turned to Hank. “Hank, you’ll be working at Old Buzz Village with a construction project.” Hank blasted two cheerful toots of his whistle.

Emily went to the Junk Yard where she found Guysbrough at his dock. “Where’s Theodore?” he said. “He’s doing a different job,” said Emily. Then they floated there, Guysbrough was beginning to get grumpier. “Well, what are you doing floating around for? We’ve got a job to do.” Emily angrily buttoned on and she pulled him away.

Emily went round the harbour. At each place she went garbage was loaded onto Guysbrough. When they at last arrived at the dump and Guysbrough was unloaded, Emily was glad to take him back to his dock.

After collecting garbage, Emily called over her radio for Pearl. “Any jobs?” she asked. “You can go and get Digby unstuck,” she said kindly. Emily was angry. She didn’t like this at all. “I won’t go and get Digby unstuck,” she said angrily. “Theodore or Hank or another tugboat can do that.” And with that, she went to find a cove to hide in for the rest of the day.

Meanwhile Digby was waiting on Sandy Beach to get unstuck. “I wonder where Emily is,” thought Digby. “Maybe I should call the pilot boats again.” He turned on his radio. “Digby to Pearl. Is Emily on her way to get me unstuck.” “I thought Emily already did that,” said Pearl, confused. “I’ll send another tugboat to get you unstuck.” “Thanks Pearl,” said Digby politely. Then he waited for a few more minutes til he heard a whistle. The moment he heard that whistle he saw Theodore. “Oh Theodore, am I glad to see you,” said Digby gratefully. Theodore buttoned onto Digby and pulled him off the shore. “Thanks Theodore,” said Digby. “Anytime,” said Theodore cheerfully. Then they both set off back to the Big Harbour.

When they returned Pearl was waiting for them. “Did either of you see Emily?” she asked. “No we didn’t,” replied Theodore. “Then I shall declare her missing,” said Pearl in her serious voice. She left to find Constance. Theodore went off to his next job feeling worried. “I hope Constance can find Emily.”

Because Emily jobs hadn’t been done, the Dispatcher had asked for Hank to return to the Big Harbour. “You’re to deliver fuel to the Naval Yard, then help bring ships in and out of the harbour.” Hank whistled twice and set off. He wasn’t smilng.

Meanwhile Constance and Foduck were looking for Emily round the Big Harbour. “Maybe she’s left the Big Harbour,” said Foduck thoughtfully. “We must search the coves near the harbour entrance,” agreed Constance.

They looked at all the coves near the entrance, but no sign of Emily. Foduck decided to ask Bedford. “Did you see Emily leave the Big Harbour?” “Yes I did,” replied Bedford. “She must be near or close to the ocean I’d say.” “Let’s look at those coves,” said Constance. They were off in a flash.

Near the beginning of the ocean, there are some coves. Foduck and Constance looked at each one. They finally found Emily just as the sun was setting. “Please tow me back,” said Emily sadly. “I’ve used up all my fuel.” Foduck did so and the three of them returned to the harbour.

After refueling Emily came to the Great Ocean Dock. By now it was dark. The Dispatcher was the only one awake. “Emily, where have you been?” he asked calmly. “I was hiding in a cove near the ocean,” she said. “I didn’t want to work today.” “Why not?” “Because I thought my jobs weren’t important,” she said sadly. “I thought big tugboats should pull big, heavy loads.” “Emily,” said the Dispatcher in a gentle voice, “big tugboats can still do small jobs. And no matter how big or small the job, all jobs are important.” Emily was silent. She was thinking. She had seen how unhappy Hank had been when she’d boasted about her strength. “You’re right Sir,” said Emily at last. “Goodnight Sir.” “Goodnight Emily,” said the Dispatcher kindly.

The next day she had to collect garbage again. And this time, she didn’t feel disappointed by doing this job, because she knew that every job in the Big Harbour is important.

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