I seem to collect old ladies. They tend to fret a lot – particularly Mrs K: Her husband used to deal with all the paperwork and it flummoxes her.
But the funny thing is that every time I go round there, grumbling to myself but feeling altogether terribly noble, something good happens.
Look at today: There was an electrician’s van in the drive opposite – with an electrician in the driving seat. He seemed to have called at an empty house and had nothing to do but wait – and listen to what I had to tell him, of course.
And then, as I started down Mrs K’s garden path, her neighbour came home. So I had to say: “Ah, you must be Mrs K’s neighbour. I need to come and talk to you. She’d a member of our discount club. You could save a lot of money too, you know.”
So we arranged that I would pop in and see him after I’d seen her. The only trouble was that I was in there for a full half an hour drinking tea and getting her payments reduced and then of course I had to show her how she could shrink her bills even more with our Cashback card … and then I had to give her a stack of cards to give to her friends and explain how she would get an extra discount when they joined. She became quite excited about it all.
And then, when I left I made to cross over to the neighbour’s front door. She pointed firmly down the path. “Oh no,” I explained. I was calling on the neighbour because he wanted to shrink his bills as well.
“You can’t do that!” she said. “He’s mine.”
And then – I can’t really believe this but I retorted: “I saw him first!”
Oh dear, oh dear. This could get very ugly.
But the neighbour is a builder and a property developer so I think he’ll become a distributor anyway – at least I hope so. I have a nasty feeling that Mrs K would be vicious in hand-to-hand combat.