A SUNDAY LUNCH FOR THREE

2 Jul

Part ONE of this tale is The Sports People.

Part Two is The Real Simone

Part Three is A Drink in Time

A SUNDAY LUNCH FOR THREE

Pre-2nd WW Tennis outfuts photo 27545572a4182062e7c89916cf48203a_zpsbf541ae1.jpg

 

Paula’s father had the very devil of a twinkle in his eye as he sat down with a fresh pint of best bitter and took a foamy sip of it.

Dad! I told you not to say anything to do with the … the … the lout!” hissed his daughter, and the smile on her father’s face broadened a little.

Lout? That’s a bit harsh if you mean my friend David,” he murmured.

Sex maniac!” whispered Paula.

Who? Me?” The expression on her dad’s face was appalled. “I loved your mother more than words can tell, and I was no sex maniac, so you can take that back,” he said, his voice suddenly grim, dark, filled with memory.

I meant David, dad,” apologised Paula.

Oh, so I suppose that’s all right, then, if, by David, you mean that lad standing at the bar?”

The sex maniac,” she agreed. “With Simone,” she added.

The lad who’s just about breaking his heart over you and who wishes the Earth would open up and swallow him into the direst of depths because you’re ignoring him? That lad?”

Holding Simone’s hand as if holding hands was … was … an orgasm!”

What do you know about those, young lady?”

I’ve heard. People say. Sex education at school, you know.” blushed Paula.

Oh blackboard stuff. Mind you, I don’t think the lad’s got much to do with sex on his mind. He reckons he was offered it on a plate not half an hour since, and ran like the wind because the girl offering it wasn’t you …”

Now you’re making things up!” she almost spat at her father.

I don’t have to. I told him to take it easy and be careful what he said because I was your dad and dads never like to think of their daughters in that way … and I bought him a pint of the decent stuff because he was trying to make sense of the lager, and that’s lad’s watter!”

Dad!” Paula was mortified. “You mentioned…” she looked furtively around to make sure nobody was listening, “…sex to him?”

Why not, love? It’s a fact of life, you know, like birth and death … and probably preferable to both! When your mother passed away all I really wanted was for her to get well enough for another morning cuddle before we got up, for another little kiss … and then it was all too bloody late… there are far too many too lates in our lives, too many days wasted when they shouldn’t be … one day, Paula dearest, you’ll realise just how short a human life is when a year gets truncated into what you perceive as little more than a day!”

Dad, you’re being too serious…”

You think so?”

Let’s go home… it must be lunch time.”

Mm … Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding with peas and potatoes straight from the microwave … my mouth’s watering already.”

I’m embarrassed.”

Because that poor lad is drooling into his beer every time he catches a glimpse of you? I can’t imagine what it is about you he finds so addictive … but he does!”

You mean, Simone!”

No. He said you. And yes – maybe we should go home and leave him in peace. We should really do that. He was hoping for a game of tennis with his mates, but it got rained off. See: he’s dressed for it, all smart in white shorts and carrying his racquet.”

I was in my tennis stuff, but you made me change!”

The world and that lad could see your knickers with what you like to wear on the Recreation ground on Sundays! On the Lord’s day – I ask you! Anyway, your outfit was a great deal too short for the pub!”

It has to be short. A girl needs plenty of freedom of movement if she’s going to execute the perfect backhand!”

I suppose it’s just about acceptable on the court, but as I pointed out, we’re in a pub!”

At least I don’t wear those knickers with rows of frills that you see in films from the olden times!”

The sixties, or somewhen like that! I grant you – they were a bit on the daft side and about as sexy as sandpaper! Just be grateful you’re not a twenties or thirties girl with dresses down to the floor, and bonnets ready to blow anywhere in the least wind! Yet they managed a keen backhand, I’ve been told.”

That’s all olden times.”

In living memory,” he pointed out. “I’ll bet granddad Potts can remember them.”

Granddad Potts remembers anything you ask him to remember,” she grinned. “I’ll bet he’d say he could clearly remember the battle of Hastings because he was there if you asked him to.”

A father needs to be backed up sometimes.”

Especially when his history’s a bit awry!” she smiled, feeling better.

He took a long draught of his beer. The foam was still swirling on top when he moved the glass, and it looked wholesome and good.

I’ve nearly finished,” he told her. “Are you about ready?”

For microwave Sunday lunch? I’ll tell you what, when the weather’s cold in the winter I’ll cook you a proper Sunday dinner, dad.”

I‘d do it myself, but I appreciate my pint.”

I used to help mum, before she fell ill,” sighed Paula. “I know all about making Yorkshire pudding!”

I’ll hold you to that then!” he smiled, and stood up. “David’s not quite finished his drink,” he said. “We’d best wait.”

What for?”

David, of course.”

He’ll be off with Simone!” she sniffed.

I doubt it. In fact, I know he won’t.” he replied.

You do? How?”

Her father sighed. “Because he’s coming with us,” he said with the broadest of grins. “I happened to remember that we’ve got a few spare dinners in the freezer and I told him he’s welcome to one of them. You see, he’s had a bit of a bereavement himself recently and hasn’t got any plans for lunch.”

He has?” Paula paled as she stared at her dad.

Yes. It’s sad really. But on the same day he was born, around eighteen years ago, his parents bought Rusty…”

Rusty?”

His dog. They grew up together, boy and dog. And Rusty died the other day. Old age and all that. He’s quite cut up about it. He loved that dog.”

I … know.”

So he had no plans for lunch. His parents are away but he didn’t want to go with them because there’s this daft girl he likes staring at on Sundays…”

Simone.”

No, you daft creature! You! So, anyway, he’s coming for lunch. I thought it only right and proper. So I’ve got to microwave a Sunday lunch for three!”

©Peter Rogerson 02.07.14

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2 Responses to “A SUNDAY LUNCH FOR THREE”

  1. pambrittain July 2, 2014 at 8:34 pm #

    Awe, that’s so sweet.

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