Thursday 28 August 2014

The home stretch of the road trip of the year.

The first time I saw Henry he was walking down the high street with a statue of The Virgin Mary under his arm. 

The fingers on one hand of the statue were broken and the thumb was missing from the other and she looked a little uncomfortable because her head was pointing towards the pavement. 

Henry looked a little uncomfortable too, with the looks he was receiving from the drivers heading home from a days work so he turned down a side street past the café where I was sitting. 

I didn’t say anything though I was tempted to say, “Hi Henry, Hail Mary.” But then I only knew her name, I didn’t know Henry’s at that point.

Two day’s later I was standing in the queue at the post office when he brushed past me.

“Oh, sorry mate”.

“No problem”, I replied, “How’s Mary?”


“Mary, I saw you the other day with a statue, how is she?”

“Oh, she’s fine” and he smiled.

“Hi, my names Harold” I said extending my hand, “ I’d be interested in buying her if you were of a mind to sell her.”

“Pleased to meet you Harold, my name’s Henry but I’m sorry she’s not for sale, but you can buy me a drink if you like” and he smiled again.

It was a nice smile. It started on his lips but broke out of his eyes a second later and then leapt across the space between us and broke through any resistance I might have had.

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