Tales From The Town #169: Bank Holiday Monday (Slight Return)

“I can’t believe we don’t have to go to stupid school today!” Claire exulted. “On a Monday! That’s never happened before! Ever!”

“It literally happened earlier this month, Claire,” Tina sighed.

“No it didn’t,” said Claire.

“On May Day,” Ethel remarked.

“We only had Monday off then,” Claire said, bolstering her earlier argument with facts, even if they contradicted previous arguments she might well have presented before. “Now we’ve got the whole week off.”

“Like at Easter,” said Daniel, nodding knowledgeably (and also enthusiastically). “When it happened twice.”

“Shut up, Daniel,” said Claire. “Everyone just shut up. Don’t even try and spoil this!”

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Notes:

1. Written on Monday 3rd, 2024

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Tales From The Town #168: Time

In the cities they say time flows like a river. But out here it resembles a lake. Still and calm, depths undisturbed since ages past, yet visible still to anyone who dares to peer beneath the surface.

Don’t look down and all that history’s barely even there.

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1. Written in May 2023

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Tales From The Town #167: Football

“What are you watching?”

“Football.”

“What are you watching football for, Daniel?”

“I like it when they kick the ball really high up in the air. Sometimes they kick it so high it goes off the top the screen!”

“Pffft. Anyone can do that. I can do that. I once kicked a ball into a tree.”

“We know, Claire.”

“And another time I kicked a ball over the house.”

“No you didn’t.”

“Shut up, Ethel. I did.”

“When?”

“When you weren’t there, obviously.”

“How did you kick a ball over the house when our ball is still stuck in the tree you kicked it into?”

“I did it before that. Obviously.”

“I once kicked the ball right over the school.”

“Don’t lie, Daniel. No one could kick a football over a school.”

“Not even Claire.”

“Shut up, Ethel. I could easily kick a football over the school. I once kicked a football right off the beach and it hit the horizon!”

“You didn’t.”

“I did!”

“You did not!”

“I did!”

“You did not!”

(repeat until end of VAR check)

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Notes:

1. Written on May 25th, 2024
2. And a sequel to this.
3. And also this.

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Tales From The Town #166: How To Catch A Vampire

“Urgh! What are you doing, Daniel?”

“I’m trying to see if you’re a vampire!”

“And tickling my neck with a flower proves that how?”

“I’m not tickling your neck. I’m trying to see if you like butter.”

“Of course I like butter. Everyone likes butter! You don’t need a flower to know that!”

“But I need to know for certain. You might be lying about liking butter.”

“Why would I lie about liking butter, Daniel?”

“Vampires don’t like butter. That’s how you can tell they’re vampires.”

“What? Where did you hear that?”

“Vampire website.”

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Notes:

1. Written on May 24th, 2024

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Tales From The Town #165: A Postcard From Deep Beneath The Sea

The Picture On The Postcard

Jellyfish illuminate the murky depths. There is nothing else to see.

The Writing On The Postcard

Beneath the sea there’s another sea and beneath that another, each one as distinct from the other as the land is from the sky. And beneath even that there’s the true surface of the earth, as alien to us and as unknowable as whatever it is that waits below the clouds of Jupiter, whatever it is that still sleeps and dreams in the heart of the sun.

The Reaction To The Postcard

Tina: “Dad’s kind of strange really, isn’t he?”

Ethel: “Very strange.”

Daniel: “Maybe he’s a merman now!”

Tina: “He’s not a merman, Daniel.”

Ethel: “He can’t even swim underwater.”

Daniel: “So how is he even breathing down there at the bottom of the sea with all those jellyfish he’s friends with now?”

Claire: “He’s not breathing down there because he’s dead!

Tina: “Claire can you please stop saying Dad’s dead. It’s very upsetting.”

Ethel: “And we all know he isn’t dead at all anyway.”

Claire: “Well he might as well be! And we definitely don’t know that at all, Ethel. For all we know he’s been dead for weeks.”

Ethel: “Then how come he’s sending us all these postcards?”

Claire: “He obviously sent them ages ago. And then he died before they arrived.”

Daniel: “Because he sent from SPACE! And UNDER THE SEA!

Claire: “Exactly!”

Tina: “And also a nearby town.”

Claire: “Which town?”

Ethel: “One that’s almost but not exactly like this town.”

Claire: “That could be anywhere!”

Tina: “What about the one he sent us from the castle?”

Ethel: “And that one he sent from the woods? The woods aren’t far away at all!”

Claire: “What castle? Which woods?”

Tina (pointing out the window): “That castle! And those woods!”

Claire: “Yeah well maybe he forgot to post those ones until he was already in space. And then he died AS he posted them. And that’s why he forgot to sign his name to the bottom of them OR put a date on them to say when he posted them. It would also explain why that one’s all covered in blood.”

Tina: “Actually I think that’s just jam.”

Claire: “Why would dad cover his postcards in jam?”

Daniel: “Maybe Dad lives in the toaster now! And also the postcards pop out of the toaster when he’s written them! And then they land in some jam for some reason.”

Ethel: “The reason is because Claire spilt all the jam because she drinks it straight out of the jar like it’s a milkshake.”

Claire: “I do not!”

Daniel: “I do!”

Claire: “Daniel! You’re not supposed to admit it!”

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Notes:

1. The postcard was written on May 16th, 2024
2. And the reaction to the postcard was written on May 22nd, 2024

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