Yesterday John decided that he wanted to take his video camera with him on our morning excursion, I was filled with trepidation…..how would the miserable man in the electrical shop take to this new development? It could quite possibly tip him over the edge. He already thinks I fancy him and that I use John as an excuse to get up close and personal. Will he now assume that I have a cunning plan to secretly film him, thereby quenching my burning desire….oh dear god.
I tried bribing John with the promise of sweets, cakes and all manner of tempting treats if he left the camera at home, but alas he was a man on a mission. It was like Peter Jackson’s quest to film ‘The Hobbit’, he was single minded, totally focused and I knew somewhere along the way Gollum would turn up.
On the train John filmed the doors opening and closing, as you do, and also every single person who got on. Understandably not everyone welcomes having a camcorder shoved in their face by a very excited young man, holding the camera with one hand, slapping his head with the other.
I bobbed about at the back saying…. ‘Oh so sorry’…’ooooh sorry’….’Aaagh! hmmmm really sorry’…. trying, but failing miserably to look like I was in control of the situation. I started saying, to nobody in particular, ‘He is so excited because its nearly Christmas’, however the word ‘Christmas’ prompted John to yell ‘ 10 more sleeps’ and again even louder ’10 more sleeps’ just incase anyone missed it the first time.
So I thought it best to say nothing and hid behind John as best I could for the rest of the journey.
First stop the balloon shop to buy an enormous Father Christmas head with a large silver bobble on the top of his hat. John has always called bobbles knobs and to my dismay took great delight in pointing to the bobble and shouting ‘Knob’at every opportunity.
It wasn’t the easiest balloon to manouver, I nearly burnt the bobble on the lights in the shop and then once outside the wind took it and it nearly took someones eye out. John’s volume controll was turned up to the max and between the three of us we were attracting a lot of attention.
That was when John spotted Father Christmas sat in his sleigh, surrounded by Elves handing out sweets. John yelled, jumped, yelled, shrieked, yelled, slapped his head and pointed.
Father Christmas spotted John, the huge balloon with the bobble and me bringing up the rear, he started waving. At least I think he was waving but it could have been a distress signal to the Elves…. ‘I’m a celebrity get me outta here’!
We dashed, bobbed and slapped our way across the road towards Father Christmas who was now ‘HO HO HO-ing’ as John got nearer. John headed straight for the Elf with the bucket of sweets and helped himself to a handful. The balloon and I tried to wrestle them out of Johns hand but it was no use and eventually the Elf let him keep them. I apologised for the umpteenth time that morning.
When I turned round, not easy with a large bobbing balloon, John had his camcorder pointed at Father Christmas and incase Father Christmas had forgotten, he was reminding him very loudly and very firmly, that it was only ‘TEN MORE SLEEPS’
It was almost with relief that we headed off to The West Kirby Dungeon, AKA the electrical shop. Its so dark in there its hard to see what’s inside.
John lead the way with the camcorder already recording, I followed with the huge balloon bobbing and jerking wildly. It was difficult to get it through the door as it is very heavy, I pushed it open with my back and tried to yank the balloon through before the door closed. I was inside the shop and then heard a dreadful squeaking sound, I turned around to find I had trapped Father Christmas in the door.
The object of my desire was stood in the murky depths of his cave, arms folded across his chest, the Gringo moustache twitching slightly. Peter Jackson had his head and the camcorder inside a Bosch washing machine so the balloon and I decided to make small talk with the miserable man. I twittered on about John meeting Father Christmas and stealing the sweets from the Elf. I laughed, the balloon bobbed, the miserable man just stared.
Just then John decided he needed a few close ups and aimed the camcorder at the miserable man whilst pointing at the balloon and yelling ‘Man, Hold.’…’He wants you to hold the balloon’ I said, unnecessarilshouted John pointing at the bobble on Father Christmas’s hat, and then at the miserable man.
The miserable man put his hand out and I silently passed him the balloon which had stopped bobbing and just hung in the air expectantly. John and his camcorder slowly circled the man and the balloon. The knob had recovered from its earlier accident and was standing proudly to attention.
The tension was growing, the lights started flickering and the moustache twitched violently for one last time.
Slowly the man raised his arm and pointed to the back of the shop, the balloon and I followed the mans finger but it was too dark to see clearly. I heard a noise, John heard a noise, and bravely walked towards where the finger pointed. The man handed me the balloon and looking me in the eyes he said….
‘ I have a son’…..that noise again….sounded like scratching…the balloon started to bob wildly as I followed John. I felt the miserable mans breath on my neck as he again breathed the words…’I have a son’… I was delighted for him and told him so. I now know he has a wife and a son, which I regard as progress in our fledgling relationship.
John meanwhile was filming something or maybe someone that seemed hunched over in a corner.
The figure stood up and walked towards the balloon and I. The balloon, clearly frightened bobbed behind me, bobble quivering. Through the gloom I could see someone, thin, gaunt with flaky skin and huge watery eyes. John continued filming, I thought there was something familiar about this creature who was clearly in urgent need of a good meal and a dermatologist. That’s when the miserable man said ‘this is my son..Gollum’
It turns out I had misheard, and it was ‘Colin!’