Monday, 31 January 2011


Dearest Mama,

I'm afraid the cold (or flu) seems to be getting worse. I haven't set foot outside the door for three days hence my delay into getting back to you. Thank you for your concern and your helpful suggestions but I'm afraid toads and bats are quite difficult to get hold of these days, as is the juice of the walalonga tree (whatever that is). And as for newts, they can prove quite costly. As a matter of interest I did pop into the local pet shop to enquire (without telling the shopkeeper of my particular need of course) and was quite surprised what the going price for young reptiles was. I could get enough Night Nurse and LemSip to last me for a year at that price. Anyway, these things don't last for too long so I'm told. I know this won't meet with your approval but I actually made an appointment with the doctor last night. A very nice lady who I got the feeling thought that I was making a lot of fuss over nothing. She told me to go home and sleep it off, which I duly did but feel no better this morning. I have a serious headache and have vomited on a number of occasions and as for the bottle of Scotch I drank to help me sleep, well I tossed and turned all night so that was a waste of time. Anyhow, that's enough about me and my woes. You didn't mention your health. How is the leg? Have you made a decision yet?
I'm sorry to have to put my visit of once again (3rd time this year- I know) but the last thing I want to do is pass this on to you. I know what you're like with a simple head cold let alone this full blown Swine Flu, with, I'm quite sure,  a touch of pneumonia and bronchitis.

Yours in poor health,  your loving son, A xx

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

The German


Do I really have to remind you that the War finished a long time ago and the arrival of a new butcher in the village who just happens to be German, does not mean that some devilish foreign plot is afoot. I suggest most strongly that you go to the poor man's shop and apologise immediately. I also think it wise that you remove the graffiti forthwith.

Yours with some annoyance A.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

The Leg

Dearest Mummy,

I do wish you wouldn't go on so about me meeting a young woman. It really is getting rather tedious. IT JUST HASN'T HAPPENED YET! And anyway I'm quite happy  living in my little townhouse with young Bertie. And no, before you start asking you won't know Bertie's family, he's foreign. Swiss actually and no he is not in Banking like yours truly. If you must know (and I know you will) Bertie is a sailor, or to be more precise a Merchant Seaman. I happened to meet him in a club I frequent. He was looking for somewhere to stay, was willing to pay, so, in what I admit was a drunken moment, I invited him to 'Lowlands'. The extra money is a blessing and as he is away at sea every other month he is no bother at all. When he is on dry land he is very good company, regaling me with salty sea dog tales and keeping me amused for hours. I've told him all about you and is looking forward to meeting you.
Now....onto more important things.
You never mention your leg? I do hope it is getting better. What does the nurse say? I hope all that ridiculous talk about 'having it off' was just that - ridiculous talk. The thought of you hobbling about with one leg is just too much. You are still a young woman we don't want you taking to your bed just yet. Not like you sister Molly! And anyway with her it was the drink as you well know so don't let me hear anymore 'it runs in the family' nonsense. A few more weeks, a good holiday (I have a surprise for you!) and you will be a right as rain I just know it. Ask Sister Bellworthy to get in touch with me as I would like to hear an official report on your progress. I'm sorry I have to adopt this tone with you mother but you must understand that I am worried about you. I think a visit is in order, possibly in the new year when work has started to quieten down.
For now I remain your loving son,

Abington x

Sunday, 23 January 2011

Mr Fish


I'm not sure I'm able to get down for Mr Fish's funeral. Of course I shall make every effort to be there but I am up to my eyes with work at the moment, some of which is with some very important clientele.
I'm sure I don't have to tell you how sorry I am to hear of the accident. Sorry and somewhat surprised. Wasn't Mr Fish an ex soldier? I'm sure I remember (when I was a boy), him telling me of his escapades on the front line. I remember quite clearly watching him pruning in the rose garden whilst at the same time he regaled me with tales of derring-do. To this end one wonders why a man of Mr Fish's experience didn't immediately recognise an unexploded shell the moment he saw it. To manhandle it like he must have to cause it to explode, seems a very odd thing to do, although to be fair I do know that his eyesight was not what it once was. One can only hope that it was quick for him.
You say that the greenhouse was completely destroyed and that the body was spread over a large area. What a sad end to a great gardener and very loyal friend. Although I have to say it was how he would have wanted to go. Before you shed too many tears mother dear think on this, Mr Fish is still, in a different way still tending the garden for you. He is STILL, improving the soil and encouraging the worms to do their valuable work.
However, Mr Fish will be irreplaceable. His ruddy face and toothless smile will be missed. They just don't make them like that anymore. Did your orchids survive the blast?

your loving son A xx

Saturday, 22 January 2011

Another Aunt Beryl Episode

Dearest Mama,

 I was so upset to hear about Aunt Beryl. I suppose it goes without saying that the police are involved once again. I do hope that nobody was hurt and the tea rooms were not crowded with innocent bystanders - not like last time. It must have been so embarrassing for you especially when you had shown so much trust in her. Had she stopped taking the pills again? You really mustn't blame yourself this time,  you can't have eyes in the back of your head. I note wuth great sadness that a horse was involved. The poor thing must have suffered greatly, one can only hope that its demise was swift and it did not suffer too much. And she dressed it like she did the sheep you say? My God what must be going through the poor mad woman's brain. And how does she find the time to knit such elaborate costumes?Anyway as long as you are undamaged and firing on all cylinders.
I am very well thank you. My leg is healing and my hair is growing back albeit slowly. I'm sure it won't be long before I can dispense with the appalling wig and regrow my quiff.
Please keep me up to date with the Beryl episode as I fear that this time it might mean a custodial sentence, and not a short one. The Magistrates must be tiring of seeing Aunt Beryl in the dock. Ah well, look forward to your reply. Take care and remember me to Beryl.

A x