The View from Parson Street Nose

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By PARSONSTNOSE | Thursday, October 04, 2012, 09:10

"When did it fall off then, Bern?"

Two elderly chaps in car-coats and flat caps pushed past me in the entrance to Wilkinsons.

"Last Monday, although ar Vi says the doctor won't want to know about it now it's come off."

I picked up my pace, utterly agog to discover what 'it' was.

"What you going to do with it then, Bern?"

"I left it on the side and the cat got it."

Shuddering I drew to a halt by the hair tints, and was still speculating on what ghastliness 'it' could have been when a toy struck me in the thigh.

"Clover! If you keeps throwing that Iggle Piggle, Nan-Nan'll have him off you."

I passed the dinky blue man to the tear-stained toddler in the buggy. Nan-Nan, a sturdy-looking woman with hair the colour of streaky-bacon, smiled gratefully at me.

"Thanks, Love," she said fastening the straps tightly round the frantically wriggling Clover. "I don't know what's gotten into her today. She's all over the place, she is."

Nan-Nan straightened up, leaning in towards me, no doubt to offer some gem of information, my lip twitched with amusement when I noticed she had a blob of cereal stuck in her hair.

"Misses her mum that's what it is. My Charmony's gone back to work and I'm looking after her Clover. I thought I was done with all that but you know how it is nowadays..."

I listened, nodding at her as she rattled on. Over Nan-Nan's burly shoulder I caught the movement as Clover, using some considerable vim, hurled her toy into a shelf. A large bottle of unguent rocked on its base before thumping into the floor with an alarming bang.

"Clover! What've you gone and done now?"

Grabbing a box of hair tint from the shelf I scurried away before Nan-Nan could realise I'd made good my escape.

I'd just drawn level with Peacocks when with a cry of: "Look! There's a quid down there!" the chap in front of me stopped in his tracks. Leaping sideways when he bent over to retrieve the coin I narrowly avoided straddling him like a mongrel in the park.

There was a horrendous tearing sound and an anguished cry came from his wife.

"Was that me trackies?" asked the man feeling behind him. "Is it bad?"

"Where's yer flaming pants, Jonners? People's looking at you!" His wife, a tall bony woman in denim pushed him towards a nearby bench. "Sit down there and you don't dare move until I comes back with some emergency joggers to cover you up."

She vanished into Peacocks as fast as a rat down a hole leaving Jonners examining the pound coin he'd found.

I stared at him, slack-jawed, unable to rid my mind of the vision of mountain gorilla that had so recently confronted me.

"She likes it when I goes commando," he said, tipping me a cheeky wink. This was enough to rouse me from my state of frozen horror and away I fled fuelled by revulsion.  

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