Saturday, 7 December 2013

Evidence that Fran may well be banned from local shops very soon

After yet another embarrassing incident today, I said to my youngest sister, 'I am losing all my faculties, one by one, I swear.'

She said, 'Oh, dear, poor you.  What can I do to help?'

She said, 'Oh, don't - you'll make me cry.'

She said, 'Here, come and give me a hug.'

She said, 'We might as well put you in a sack and throw you in the river right now, then.'

That's what you need, isn't it, when you're becoming older, and vulnerable?  A sister who stays faithful.

My last blog post was about the fact that I needed new spectacles.  Today, I found that I can no longer express myself clearly and perhaps need speech therapy before I lose total control of my lips.

I was in a gift shop in Warwick.  Downstairs, it's all pretty candles and soaps and teddies and linens and ceramics.  Upstairs, there's a section for clothes.

I was standing by the bottom of the stairs and a woman peered up them and said to me, 'What's up there, then?'

I told her, 'Oh, it's clothes.'

There was a pause while she continued to gaze up the stairs, and then she said, disappointedly, 'Oh, that's a shame.'  She turned to her husband and repeated it to him: 'What a shame that is, isn't it, dear?'  And then they wandered off further down the shop, presumably to see if they could assuage their grief by buying a Christmas tea towel with a reindeer on it that would look silly at one minute past midnight on Boxing Day.  Or maybe a candle smelling of Christmas pudding that would give all the guests a migraine and a propensity to argue.

I thought her disappointment an over-reaction, to be frank.  Just because she didn't want to buy clothes, that didn't mean other people wouldn't appreciate them.

A couple of minutes later, the same couple came back towards me where I still stood at the bottom of the stairs, looking at some ceramics and wondering whether £23.95 was too much to pay for a butter dish just because it had the word BUTTER on it, as though a butter dish could be interpreted in any other way.

'Darling, is this the butter dish, or the pink slippers we bought for Auntie Freda?  I'm in two minds.'



Anyway, I could sense the woman standing just behind me, and then I heard her say to a passing assistant, 'Excuse me.  Is it okay if we look upstairs?'

What? I thought.  One minute she's disappointed that it's only clothes, the next minute she's changed her mind.  Fickle!

'Of course,' said the assistant.

'But that lady,' I could hear the customer say, although I was determined not to look round, 'said it was closed.'

'No, it's open,' said the assistant, sounding puzzled. 'There are some lovely dresses and tops up there. Do go up and see.'

Then there was a silence, and I could feel their gazes on the back of my head as I slunk down the shop towards the door.  I could imagine the conversation....

Customer: 'So why did she tell us it was closed?'

Assistant: 'I don't know.  She doesn't work here.  I don't know why she said that.'

Customer: 'What an odd woman.  Is she local?'

Assistant: 'I think so.  Maybe she's from the home down the road.  They let them out sometimes, just for the afternoon.'

Customer: 'Well, I hope we don't meet her in any other shops.  She's a little freaky.'

Assistant: 'We'll keep an eye, and if she comes back in, I might call Security.'



'You mean,' said Fred, alarmed, 'that plump woman with the short dark hair?  Do I have to?
Can't you send Tom instead?'



Of course, my sister found this whole story a reason to sympathise with me to point and laugh.  All I know is, now my speech is going as well as my eyesight, this confirms that I am well and truly in deterioration mode and should begin to plan who to leave my collection of coloured paper clips to.




29 comments:

  1. The customer who was shopping for cloves also wishes to lodge a complaint with you.

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha! She was just in the wrong damn shop!

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  2. It's not YOUR fault. Those people obviously came from The Group of Hearing Impaired who were on an outing. They turn off their hearing aids when they're together so then can all hear exactly the same thing, which isn't much.

    Love,
    Janie

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    Replies
    1. Well, I wish they'd wear badges and save me a lot of embarrassment.

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    2. Fran, have you sent me a birthday card for my MIL's 80th? I'm trying to gather 80 cards from all over the world. If you haven't sent a card and are willing, please send it to

      Janie Goltz
      PO Box 61371
      Jacksonville FL 32236

      Her name is Margaret. Thank you!

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    3. Did you ask me to? I'll try and remember to do this tomorrow. What a great idea.

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  3. I can provide you beloved collection of colored paper clips a good home. Please keep this in mind when the time comes.

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    Replies
    1. You will have to fight my sister for them. But thank you for your kind offer.

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  4. I agree with Janie, the woman obviously has a hearing problem, as I do myself.
    Perhaps if you'd said clothing section she might have understood.
    Your sister sounds a lot like my daughter. I once told her that when I died she could have all the electronic stuff, dvds etc, she said "can I shoot you now to save time?"

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha! My daughter's last birthday card to me said, 'Congratulations! You're not dead!'

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  5. Me me, I want your paper clips! Why do you think I suggested the river?

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    Replies
    1. Does that mean you'll be wanting all my novelty pencil sharpeners, too? Honestly ...

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  6. Bob Dylan had this problem in the 1960s. He took to walking round with pre-inscribed boards to communicate with. Have you considered this option? You could trundle them around in your little tartan wheeled carrier bag for ease of transport. And when someone asks you a question, like 'are you safe out by yourself, dear?' you can just indicate to them to wait for a moment before rummaging through your trolley-bag for the answer. You see, in today's high tech world, the answer is always at your fingertips.

    Happy Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are the second person this week to suggest I need a tartan trolley bag. No wonder I'm feeling paranoid.

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  7. There is always one mad woman in a department shop... it's a requirement.

    I had to banish myself to the sorting room at the charity shop yesterday when I failed to add up a few items with any kind of sense to myself, the customer & the manageress.
    I put it down to the previous night's late night shopping - I just can't go out in the evening any more without sleeping the whole of the following day.

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    1. Ha ha! I thought that was going to say late night partying and then you said 'shopping'!! That made me laugh!

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  8. Not just me then? I'm having to repeat myself quite a lot just lately.........and ENUNCIATE propely......

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    Replies
    1. Why is 'enunciate' such an awkward word to say?

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    2. Trial by Enunciation. Sounds, painful.

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  9. And here I thought it was because my Significant Other of 44 years was growing deaf.

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    Replies
    1. Well, if you're not sure, blame it on them anyway. It's safer.

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  10. Well, at least you've made me feel better about not having a sister, a serious lack which has been a grief to me all my life. Maybe I'm not missing as much as I thought.

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    Replies
    1. You can borrow mine if you like and I can get a boost in self-esteem while she's away.

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    2. Hmm, you haven't advertised her very well. I'll think about your kind offer.

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  11. I can't help with your enunciation, but I CAN (& do) offer you my brother--my kids--& my husband. Act within the next 7 days & I'll include free shipping!!

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    Replies
    1. Are they good with computers/happy to put out the recycling/brilliant fish chefs? If so, please ship immediately.

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  12. I'd like your sister please , if she's up for grabs . I could do with someone sensible on my side next time I go in front of the Lo-Fat Police ...
    As for the developing speech defect ... have you considered Steradent ?

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    Replies
    1. I thought Steradent was what you put your false teeth into at night. Confused.

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    2. As well you might be . I meant Poligrip . Serves me right for being facetious .

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