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Dicey's Song

Dicey's Song

by Cynthia Voigt

Dicey's Song Chapter 8 Summary

  • It’s the week of Thanksgiving, and Dicey is now, as Mina puts it, "a folk hero." When she walks down the halls at school—with Mina, no less—people actually give her the time of day.
  • After school, Mina walks Dicey to work, and on the way she asks if Dicey’s paper was about her mother. Dicey actually tells her yes. Score one for Mina.
  • But that nice moment is cut short when they arrive at the store to find Sammy waiting—and he's beat up. He asks Dicey and Millie if they’ve ever played marbles. Dicey hasn’t; Millie has.
  • Turns out Sammy got some marbles last week, but he’s lost them (literally, not figuratively) at school. 
  • Millie tells Dicey that she doesn’t have to work on Thursday, and that Millie had to remind Gram to buy a turkey. 
  • Dicey says that's no biggie, since they don’t celebrate Thanksgiving. Or at least they didn’t in Provincetown.
  • Sammy can’t ride the bus home because he fought on it, so Dicey gives him a lift home on her bike.
  • At dinner, Gram says she’s invited Mr. Lingerle to Thanksgiving dinner. The kids get all psyched because they’ve never had Thanksgiving dinner before, so they discuss what they’re going to eat.
  • Once again, Sammy won’t tell anybody what he fought about that day, but he wants Gram to teach him how to play marbles. He’s kind of stuck on this marbles thing.
  • The next day, Sammy’s waiting at the store again, and he’s excited because it might snow. Dicey says she hopes Gram can find coats for them in the attic.
  • Jeff comes into the store to buy meat, and he offers Dicey and Sammy a ride home. He tells Dicey they can put her bike in the back of his car.
  • Sammy’s a little timid around Jeff. He doesn’t want to accept the ride, but Dicey’s determined to reach out, so she agrees.
  • When Jeff drops them off at home, he says he’d like to meet Maybeth, but Dicey tells him some other time. When he asks if she means it, she says yes.
  • Progress!
  • The next day is Thanksgiving, and Mr. Lingerle brings pies. Everybody stuffs themselves, and the kids are all blissed out on the awesomeness that is Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Mr. Lingerle tells Gram that he thinks she could sell her heavy silver serving spoon for good money, and she tells him she’s thought about it. 
  • Gram got the spoon years ago, when her family made lots of money bootlegging. Oh well isn't that interesting. This is the first time she’s ever mentioned that she came from a family of bootleggers.
  • Mr. Lingerle tells everybody to rest up so they can go for a walk after dinner. James is too excited about his upcoming birthday, when his friend Toby (that's right: James has a friend now) is coming to spend the night. He tells Gram about the feast he wants her to make, and she says she can’t hear him because she’s been struck deaf. Looks like someone could use a break from cooking. 
  • The next day when Dicey leaves work, it’s snowing big time. But Mina shows up anyway, offering to walk Dicey home, and the two open up to each other.
  • Dicey tells Mina that they had never had Thanksgiving dinner until yesterday. Mina tells Dicey that Mina’s got problems, too.
  • See, she feels she can’t do what she wants to do in life because she’s a black female. But now she at least has another oddball she can relate to: Dicey. 
  • As an example of how odd Dicey is, Mina says, Dicey has never asked if Mina had French-kissed anybody. Apparently that’s what everyone's talking about in school these days.
  • Mina says that’s what she likes about Dicey: she doesn’t want to talk about boys and kissing and babies. Yep, accurate.
  • When Mina tells Dicey that people think Gram is kind of bonkers, Dicey invites Mina to meet her sometime, so she can see for herself.
  • Which makes Dicey come to a realization: maybe Sammy’s fighting about Gram. When she gets home, Dicey asks Gram if she thinks that’s what it might be.
  • Gram’s all, nuh-uh, no sir.
  • The next day, while Dicey’s working on the boat, Jeff comes by and surprises her. He says he's there to meet Maybeth, but we suspect he's got more romantic intentions. 
  • Whatever the case may be, Dicey invites him in to meet the whole fam.
  • Inside, Jeff, Maybeth, and Dicey sing, and Mina drops by. Gram tells them she’s brought them an alto.
  • They all sing hymns, Gram makes cookies, and Sammy sits on the arm of Gram’s chair, like he’s watching over her.
  • How's that for cozy?

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