Then, I heard some yelling coming from inside the old Santeria. I could hear the bloke who owns it, the weirdy high priestess lady and some kid’s voice, saying: ‘I never took nothing.’ Then I hear someone calling my name and Miss Gladiola comes running acrosss the road. I tell you, since she’s had her veins done she’s like a greyhound and she’s got to be sixty odd.
Miss Gladiola said: ‘What’s going here? I heard the commotion.’
I pointed to the braid on the pavement and Miss Gladi said: ‘My life, don’t touch it, it’s a totem!’ I took a few steps backwards, well sharpish. And I said: ‘I think they’ve caught some kid shop-lifting.’
And Miss Gladiola said: ‘Oh! I’m going in, you stay here!’ (Like I needed telling! As Miss G. has told me time and again: ‘You don’t have the spiritual stamina.’)
So she goes in there like the Duke de Richlieu, and there’s a load more shouting and suddenly some little lad comes running out, crying his eyes out and legs it across the road. Then Miss G. comes out and she’s shook up, and she starts manhandling me along the road, saying: ‘We have to get well away from the influences, dear.’
Turns out that Miss Gladiola went rushing in, convinced that they were kidnapping the child (‘for their dark purposes, don’t ask me what they are’) but it so happened that the child had pinched a Mars Bar. AND, poor little devil, Miss Gladiola knew his grandmother – which is why he came running out at such a lick, in floods of.
However, as Miss G. said: ‘It was better to be safe than sorry. They entice the children with their chocolate, you know.’
I said: ‘Well, they do run a newsagent.’ And she laughed and laughed and said: ‘What better way to entice children.’
She left me half-way to the shops cos she was on her way home after work, when she saved me from the totem and effected child rescue.
Sometimes, I think the whole sketch is madness, but other times I really do wonder. I mean, where did that braid come from?
Next, I’m in Morrisons buying dog biscuits and such when an almight row broke out between (I think) a mother, a grandmother and a grandson (aged about 5). It was one of them families where there only seems to be 10yrs between the generations. Anyhow, the grandmother is yelling at the grandson about: ‘put that back or I’ll have you, don’t think I won’t.’ Then the kid comes running up the aisle with a multi-pack of crisps that’s bigger than he is and he’s shouting back: ‘You won’t hit me in the supermarket.’ Then the grandmother yells at him: ‘No, I’ll kick you up the arse.’
By now, everyone is standing stock still and silent – face it, it was exciting.
Next thing is the mother comes running, pushing the trolley in front of her and she’s shouting at the grandmother (her mother, presumably): ‘Don’t you lay a bloody hand on him!’ and then, argh, the grandmother rounds on her and says: ‘This is all your fault he’s like this, you’re the cause of all this, you’re the one that needs the slap!’ And then there was a face-off and the mother character’s going: ‘Go on, I dare you.’ And the grandmother character’s going: ‘Don’t think I won’t.’ And then the Morrison’s security guard (poor, poor sod) came bowling up and somehow managed to herd them towards the front door.
So, just as me and the lady in front of me in the queue were saying: ‘What are people like…’, I look over to the far end of the shop, just past the check-outs and there’s about four Morrison’s staff surrounding some old lady with her trolley and all I heard was: ‘Are you sure you bought all these items?’ And the old lady isn’t all shocked (like I’d be) or really upset (like Man Friday would be, say) but she’s all: ‘Oh my goodness, well I just don’t know, my heavens,’ etc etc. I couldn’t decide whether she was the best actress in the world or truly a bit barmy. Dunno how it ended cos it was it was my turn thru the check-out and I couldn’t keep standing there staring – I might have looked like an accomplice.