Friday, November 09, 2007

Why I Didn't Blog Yesterday

I tried to get to a computer yesterday but the fates conspired against me. Sometimes blogging has to come second when life becomes too complicated. First there was the problem with the train which had got stuck on the way back from Manchester. I’d gone there for another modelling session with my favourite catalogue. This time it was for next year’s Spring/Summer underwear collection, which made for a day light in thongs but heavy in the fleece-lined Y-fronts for men with bladder control issues. It made me realise, yet again, that I’m really modelling for the wrong people.

I finally got home around nine o’clock to find a scene reminiscent of Fiddler on the Roof outside the flat. A horse and cart was parked in the road and the cart was piled high with my belongings. I barely recognised the woman in the shawl and headscarf coming out from the flats with a bundle of my clothes in her arms.

‘That’s the lot,’ said Gabby, filling the last remaining space on the cart with a fistful of my best thongs. ‘Chip ready?’

‘Ready for what?’ I asked. ‘Do you want me to sing about being a rich man?’

She didn’t understand my allusion. ‘We must move. It here soon.’

‘What’s here?’

‘The flood!’

She leapt up on the cart and took the reigns in her hand and a whip in the other. Without a pause, she cracked the latter and dragged the former and the cart turned a neat one hundred and eighty degrees in the middle of the road before it started to head towards the main road and higher ground.

I could only jog behind.

‘Gabby, I think you’ve got a little confused,’ I suggested as the night air cracked to the sound of the whip.

‘Sky News,’ she shouted. ‘Jeremy Thompson say we be all under water.’

‘Did he?’ I asked, having not seen or heard a word of news all day. You might wonder about my not asking for more information but I will always believe what Jeremy Thompson has to say.

‘Tidal surge,’ was the last thing I heard Gabby shout as she got an extra bit of speed from the horse. I could only grab onto the back of the cart and pull myself up next to the washing machine.

We travelled for nearly three hours before Gabby gave the horse a rest. By then, we were on the border to England, a good few hundred feet above sea level, and I was frozen to the tumble dryer.

‘How much further do you think we need to go?’ I asked, as Gabby appeared at the back of the cart.

‘We wait here, tonight,’ she said, taking a bearing from the stars.

‘I’m freezing,’ I chattered.

‘Better than being in water,’ she replied, uncaring.

Somewhere around three o’clock in the morning, a police car arrived and asked Gabby why she’d chopped down the ‘Welcome to Wales’ sign and was now burning it on the hard shoulder.

‘Chip cold. We build fire,’ she explained. She turned and smiled at the policeman. ‘You want hot dog?’ she asked, holding out a stick with something hot and sizzling on the end. The meat was tough. I hadn’t dare ask her where she’d got it.

‘No thank you, ma’am. But do you think you could explain what you’re doing here?’

‘We avoid flood.’

‘Flood?’ asked the officer.

‘The tidal surge,’ I explained, sitting at the side of the road and wrapped in the dressing gown I’d recovered from the pile of my belongings.

‘You mean the tidal surge that is currently moving down the east coast?’

I didn’t think I could have got colder but I did.

‘That’s the one,’ said Gabby, brazen in her ignorance. ‘We got to move. Get to high ground.’

I got home this morning at five o’clock, frozen and demoralised. Gabby doesn’t know chagrin, though she’s now more fully cognisant on the difference between ‘east’ and ‘west’ . She marched up the flat with a defiant swagger. ‘This good practice for next time,’ was all she would say. This afternoon will be interesting. There’s a cart to unload and a horse that needs returning to whoever she took it from.

All of which is why I didn’t blog yesterday. I hope you understand…


Sir James Badger said...

Wise girl, Gabby. First sign of trouble - th opposite to the Michael Fish Syndrome - and she's out of there. Have you counted your spoons yet?

elberry said...

She will be sure to survive whatever catastrophe befalls mankind. The downside of this is that survivors are usually psychotic and paranoid and homicidal.

Mopsa said...

I always had a soft spot for Tevye

dovid said...

gabby is obviously not a descendant of the Biblical family of Romanian boat builders descended from Nandru. Most people have heard of Noah but few know that he was really a Romanian named Nandru ( translated means.."journey prepared). God spoke to Nandru and warned him of a great flood and told him to build a boat to save himself and a stock of animals. Fortunately for Nandru, he had no family and the only animals he could find to save in Romania were sheep. So contrary to the account in Genesis that it took 120 years to build the boat, it actually only took Nandru a few hours to nip down to the local parks lake and nick a rowing boat large enough for himself and two sheep.....both female. Nandru..together with his two new wives then set sail for Wales and ended up beached in his boat on the top of Snowdonia.
Not a lot of people know this.

Dovid said...

.....for the non-believers who think this is just another shaggy sheep story.....I've got one thing to say to you all....