“I just had this feeling they weren’t going to come,” muttered Norman, with
weary fatalism. “I wish I didn’t have these instincts. The girl was sympathetic when
I told her the neighbours wouldn’t like it. It’s only £20 after all. You’d think
they could take it by credit card on the phone. I’ll send another cheque and I suppose
I’ll have to go through the rigmarole of cancelling the last one. I even phoned them
up to check I’d sent it to the right department. Never arrived, they claim. Lost
in the system somewhere. I smelt a rat when it didn’t turn up on my bank statement.
All that rain last night too. Well I’ll just leave it all out there till next week.
No. Perhaps I’d better drag it round the side. Don’t bother to help. I can manage
a soaking wet bed, three rain sodden mattresses, a headboard and broken typing
chair. Just when we’d made a space in the garage too. Oh well. Can’t expect Thame
to be totally perfect.”
TEN MINUTES LATER, shamefacedly:
“You won’t believe what I’ve just found in my bike basket.”
IT’S THE GOOD SAMARITAN’S WIFE WE FEEL SORRY FOR
Being in a highly charged emotional state anyway, as she set off on the bus to
Aylesbury to buy a new computer, Jean was disturbed to realise that the old man in
the seat behind her was somewhat drunk. Luckily, he lumbered off at the village called
Stone - ‘Stoned in Stone’, she quipped merrily.
After a successful time in the computer shop and a good lunch, she and Norman
boarded the bus again in Aylesbury and joined in the general merriment about the
driver’s failure to make his vehicle register its proper number. In the end they
all sailed off on a craft labelled 362 with the driver leaning out of his cabin at
each stop to cry, “This really is a 280!” Anyone still troubled with the concept
of transubstantiation should ponder this.
At Stone again Jean saw the old man, by now even more a-stagger, vaguely passing
the bus stop. Instantly Norman was on his feet. “There’s that old man. He doesn’t
know this is his bus!” Rushing to the front to detain the driver, leaning
out with arms flailing, calling out to the dreadful apparition, Norman finally heard
two old ladies saying, “He doesn’t want the bus. He lives here.”
Ruefully Norman regained his seat. “I didn’t want him to miss his bus,” he muttered.
“I did!” said his spouse.
David Snook, on considering the finer aspects of the Brands’ new car, found himself
reminded of Postman Pat.