Monday, 3 May 2010

Humiliation for Veronica Manntrapp.

Since the opening of the village model agency, it would appear the differences Claudia Shaver and I have let fester over the years, now seem to have been put to rest.

It was Tuesday morning and one had arranged the usual Ladies-Who-Brunch meet at the village coffee shop. Kitty, Fanny and I always like to have a weekly meet to put the world to rights over a length of Mr. Peppercorn’s prize sausages stuffed between Pat Tissery’s buttered baps (one feels strongly that local businesses should always be loyal to their community and use the local fayre).

Anyhoo … Kitty was running late so Fanny – landlady of the Badger’s Snatch – and I had ordered our sandwiches and were sipping our coffees when Claudia walked through the door. The bell ring dissipated as she closed the door behind her.

“Dame Crusty!” She said, with an air of surprise in her voice.

“Claudia dear,” One acknowledged, “one trusts the model agency is proving a success?”

“Oh yes, Dame Crusty, things are going great. Only this week, I’ve signed up Veronica Manntrapp. She’s got a lucrative advertising job already with Les Gumbres, the Greengrocer.”

“Splendid, dear!” One said. “Well … one would like to invite you to join us, dear, but one doesn’t want too. We shall catch up again soon.”

Claudia made her way to a table for one in the back of the coffee shop. Turning to the young woman standing by the window and gaining her attention by throwing a small sachet of sweetener at her head one said, “ Could you bring one another pot of coffee, dear, and perhaps a couple of hobnobs?”

“Oh… I don’t work here, I’m just waiting for my daughter.”

“Then you have ample time on your hands, poppet. Two sugars with milk please. Fanny? Another?”

Fanny declined and the rather sour faced woman made her way to the counter. Suddenly, there was a strange vibration against one’s right hooter. It was a text from Kitty advising she would be unable to attend. Her C.P.R. class had turned into chaos after a pair of adolescents had used a little licence in their interpretation of mouth-to-mouth. Thankfully, she managed to stop things before babies were born.

Fanny and I decided to take a gentle stroll back to the Badger’s Snatch, where one had parked the Aston. Getting up from our seats, the sour faced woman returned with a pot of coffee and a plate of biscuits. “No thank you, dear. One couldn’t manage another thing!”

We were approaching Mr. Peppercorn’s butchery emporium and saw him come out of the Greengrocer shop next door and go into his own – he was taking a leek inside – and one thought no more about one’s encounter with Claudia. It was not until passing the shop window that Fanny nudged one’s arm and pointed.

There stood Veronica Manntrapp doing her advertising campaign. When she saw us, her poor face said it all. She was devastated. Her elegant Marks & Spencer ensemble did not compliment the full length sandwich board she had been contracted to don and her angst had clearly caused her to grip Mr. Gumbres’ onions a little too hard resulting in the skin flaking off. Both he and Veronica had tears in their eyes. Poor Les couldn’t even see his scales and Veronica looked like a young Alice Cooper but with better skin tone. All in all it sort of distracted one from the advertising message regarding the low price on Les’s full length sheathed cucumber. Fanny and I made haste back to the Snatch to lessen Veronica’s humiliation.

Anyhoo … one later found out that the days work had brought £129.52 into the modelling agency and 2 weeks worth of free fresh produce for Veronica herself.

Well, as they always say ... no pain, no gain.

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