Malcolm says he has something to show us.
We are more than happy to let him take us round the houses on our way back home
from Mr B’s weekly pampering session. Malcolm is the driver of our Dial-a-Ride bus and, to be honest, wherever he wants to take us, that’s where we will go. That’s what passengers do, don’t you know? We have very little choice in the
matter. Had we had a choice, however, we would surely have Gone Along With Malcolm.
Malcolm had kept very calm while loading Mr B and his wheelchair onto the bus,
considering that a small, but noisy, queue had formed behind our bus, unable to move forward until we were loaded and on our way. There was much tooting of horns and loud complaining from the inconvenienced motorists - a fact which appeared to give Mr B a
great deal of contrary pleasure. Mr B does like to harbour a Sense or Entitlement. “They will just have to wait, won’t they?” he told Malcolm, airily. Which was when I realised that I actually knew the first driver in the queue of cars. I
could have pretended I hadn’t recognised her but I probably wouldn’t have got away with it so I trotted to her car window to say we wouldn’t be long. She wasn’t in a conciliatory mood but I couldn’t really blame her.
I was feeling lucky anyway, as it happens, because - amazingly - we won a bottle of Pinot Grigio in the Guild Care daily raffle. Every week without fail I buy a strip of
raffle tickets (£1 a strip - I am, indeed, the Last of the Big Spenders.) I am so very predictable that the guy who sells the tickets actually positions himself at the door waiting for me to return from my rush to the shops, all the better to nab me
and my pound coin. Almost always, Malcolm comes to pick us up for our journey home before the raffle is drawn which means I have to leave our tickets with someone else - generally someone who doesn’t appear to have any tickets of their own - entreating
them to “be lucky!” Today the raffle was drawn early and the third ticket out of the hat was pink number 304. Surprise, surprise!
you want to know what Great Surprise did Malcolm have in store for us. Well, I had been following, via Facebook, the erection of the Worthing Big Wheel on Steyne Gardens - but seeing it in all its, well, roundness, was quite something. I try to take a photograph
on my mobile phone but the windows of the bus get in the way. Well that’s my excuse anyway.
We have a good, but inconclusive discussion about the speed
with which the Worthing Wheel has been erected. Malcolm wonders whether it might have been like flat pack furniture, where there is almost always a nut, or a bolt, or a screw missing. This is a Worrying Thought. I tell our friendly driver that I have heard
the hotels in the roads bordering the gardens where the wheel will be turning are up in arms because passengers on the wheel will be able to look right into the bedroom windows of hotel guests. We give this thought due consideration but are unable to arrive
at any conclusion. The jury is out, Your Honour.
Later in the afternoon the Youngest of the Darling Daughters telephones me while walking to the supermarket -
this, she tells me, is productive use of her time. I choose not to tell her that she could spend the time checking out the Harbingers of Spring - the flowers, the blossoming trees, the birds searching for places to nest - because it is always so lovely to
chat, whatever the time of day.
I tell her about the Worthing Wheel. “So you’ll be taking a ride on it, will you?” she asks. I think about Malcolm’s
Flat Pack Theory and say, possibly not.
“I was joking!” laughs this daughter of mine. Who knows me so well…