Gardening, RHS, join now before it’s too late, Nigel, shocking!
Wanted, the new breed of radical RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) member willing to do to the Society what George Osborne did to the police and the NHS. Now that’s got your attention, hasn’t it?
Well, growing old is great for a number of reasons, not just preparing you for membership of the RHS but also not having to go to work anymore. After retirement, it takes a couple of months to realize that boredom is far better than work in every respect. In fact, boredom is an absorbing full-time task and that work itself was the most truly boring thing of all. Although at the time you pretended that teaching liberal studies at a technical college in Acton was a vocation, a calling and that the students thought you ‘inspirational.’ Next in importance is the realization that most of the people who remember you from your youth and middle age are dying off.
Soon no one will be left who remembers you getting drunk at Colin’s wedding and forcing yourself on his sister who was a bridesmaid and then being sick on the presents… and the speech. Dear god your uninvited speech. Her face as you reminded everyone of the bride’s failed relationships that led her to her true love, your best friend, Colin! Not even he knew about Ted in the caravan on Canvey Island after the Doctor Feelgood concert. Of course, people don’t have to die to lose their memory. Different forms of mind loss are taking away all memories of that other time you persuaded everyone to buy into a pyramid selling scam, including Alison’s parents who invested their son’s disability stairlift fund. Whatever made you think that mobile pet grooming was going to be bigger than coal mining? And thank god most of the people on the staff development weekend at the Holiday Inn in Stroud are dropping fast or being alarmed by the sight of a salad after what you did.
No matter what people tell you the problem with doing something unforgivable is, it is just that, it’s unforgivable therefore unforgettable. Even accepting that what you did was a biblical error, a terrible gut dissolving, putting on a violent sobbing fit, god promising, oh look I’ve cut myself, mistake you think should just be forgotten. But nothing can ever take you back to before she freaking guessed. Her questioning had all the skill and guile of the inquisition with the threat of the wrack and the pokers lurking unsaid. And then she insisted you made the ‘phone call to tell your mistake that she had to tell her husband or you would. The week after, that first glimpse of her across the staff car park on a Tuesday morning in the rain and the feeling that he would come after you lasted for years………
Tune in next week for PART 2
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