The View from Parson Street Nose

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By PARSONSTNOSE | Thursday, January 24, 2013, 11:57

"Steady as you go, there's a slippery bit there." An elderly couple were mincing along in the snow. Both wore huge white trainers and brightly coloured hiking socks pulled up to their knees. They looked like a pair of geriatric goat-herders.

"Careful there, Chrissie Love." Mr Goat-herder grabbed her arm. "It's like glaaaaass, come yer, my love." He took her hand and they inched away, trainers crunching as they went.

"Don't you go getting any ideas," said Skipper frowning at me. "Plenty of walls to hold on to."

Under a thick hat, scarf and buttoned into a duvet coat, I took the dog out for his evening airing. Even Pickle was sporting a cosy new coat and dog-mina.

The bright white of the snow gave an unearthly glare, deadening most sounds. A few cars were out on West Street and only a couple of stalwart dog walkers had ventured out.  

"Sssh, Pickle," I said to the dog." Let's just check your coat's on straight in this doorway, shall we?"

A strange noise was coming my way, getting louder all the time, it was rhythmic and echoing. There was an almighty thump as a shoulder hit a shop window, a slight pause then a drunk staggered by our doorway.

"All the single ladies, I'm a single lady," he sang. "Shoulda put a ring on it, baybeee!"

"Sssh, Pickle," I hissed. "I don't think he's howling – he's singing.

"Oooo-ee, ooo-ee," crooned the drunk, staggering over the pavement, feet sliding out in all directions.  He 'single ladied' his way out of sight, occasional giggles carrying on the icy air each time he skidded.

A few days later, the snow had melted enough to drive to Aldi. I dodged out of the way as a woman swung an outsize snow-lifter over her head.

 "Gor, theys got shovels in 'ere, Bert," she said.

"Watch it, you daft old bat," snapped Bert. "That woman nearly 'ad 'er chips then. 'Ere, let me carry it."

"You aint carrying it, I am," snarled his wife, clutching the spade to her chest. "I never gets to carry anyfink exciting."

"If you thinks a spade's exciting, you needs your 'ead testin'," said Bert.

"And you knows what I says to that, ar Bert?"

"What?" Bert was rummaging through the biscuits. He jumped about a foot in the air when she struck him up the behind with the spade.

"Don't tick off the wife when she's gotta shovel in 'er 'and!"

You can't argue with logic like that.

      

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