The View from Parson Street Nose
By PARSONSTNOSE | Thursday, January 17, 2013, 05:45
There was a whistler in Lidl, chirping a dirgesome ditty, busily shaking cereal boxes, presumably assessing the weight of the flakes.
Realising his tune had suddenly become more upbeat, I quickly spotted the reason. Two well-dressed women were admiring the muffins by my side.
"Don't you have a list, Fliss?" said one, sucking in a horrified breath, her immaculate blonde bob swaying gently under distress. "I couldn't function without my list."
Fliss laughed. "Good grief, no, I'm a disaster – I'd only loose it if I did make one. I just grab everything and repent later!"
Doing the rounds of the shelves, I successfully managed to avoid the whistler, but as I stood arranging my groceries on the conveyor-belt, he arrived behind me, letting out the last few bars of a rousing version of Goldfinger right into my ear.
The two well-dressed women were at the head of the line; Fliss was scrutinising an assortment of Lidl carrier bags.
"Don't you do one in a medium?" she asked the confused looking check-out girl. The girl shook her head, raising her hands in a helpless shrug. "Have you got any in Jute?"
"Just take the four big ones, Fliss, everyone's looking at us." The blonde bob began swaying again.
As dusk fell, an icy drizzle was stinging my cheeks as I waited for the lights to change outside the White Hart.
"I don't like it, its slushy snow and my feet's freezin'!" whined a girl by my side. She shuffled her bare feet about in a pair of pathetically insubstantial, leopard-print ballet pumps.
"What are you on about, Eller?" The girl's boyfriend raised his face towards the thick grey skies. "That's not snow – I knows snow when I see's it."
Since when 'ave you been a wevverman?" Eller snapped back at him.
"Snow's white and rain's see-fru, that's how I know."
For such a wisp of a girl Eller managed to put a surprising amount of power into the shove she gave him. The boyfriend pitched sideways into a chap with roughly the same circumference as an oil-drum.
"Ere, watch it," said the oil-drum. "I nearly went in the traffic, then." He eyed the couple menacingly. "You wants to keep 'er on a lead, Mate, she's dangerous, that 'un."
Eller's boyfriend, to give him his due, took stock and a firm hold of Eller's shoulders.
"Sorry, Mate," he said. "She starts gettin' lively when it starts gettin' dark." He tightened his grip on Eller when she began writhing like a cat with the scent of bath-water in its nostrils.
The lights beeped out the crossing signal and we all trooped over the road. When I rounded the corner, Eller and her boyfriend were still behind me. Night was closing in rapidly over the car park. From behind me came a high-pitched shriek almost sending me falling over the boot of a Volvo.
"Oh, no!" howled Eller to her boyfriend. "My shoe's come off and gone under that car – get it for us, will yer?"