25 Jul

Part One of this tale is The Sports People.

Part Two is The Real Simone

Part Three is A Drink in Time

Part Four is A Sunday Lunch for Three

Part Five is Salutary Tales and Downright Lies

Part Six is The Monster Next Door

Part Seven is Quizzing the Night Away

Part Eight is Truth and Lies

Part Nine is The Very Short Skirt

Part Ten is Simone in the Shadows

Part Eleven is To Kill Or Not to Kill

Part Twelve is The Toytown Cemetary

Part Thirteen is A Slightly Naughty Suggestion

Part Fourteen is The Gorgeousness of Plans

Part Fifteen is The Love Bite


skegness photo: Skegness Caravan Outside 2 Veranda1.jpg

“It makes sense that if we’re an island race we should want to walk along the beach,” mused Mr Potts. He was dressed in shorts that he’d bought years earlier when the fashion was for very short, and his legs were a deathly white in comparison to the faded fabric which may, once, have been pristine white.

“I’d prefer to go to the arcades in town,” said Paula. “Walking along beaches is for old fogies like you!”

“And sand gets in your shoes,” added David, beginning to understand the relationship between his beloved Paula and her father better.

“I’ll tell you what,” suggested the older man, Paula, I’ll not frown if you wear that ridiculously tiny summer dress I saw you clutching behind your back just now if you agree to walk into town with me. It’s no more than a mile and a bit, and by the time we get there we’ll all be ready for fish and chips followed by a pint in a pub – and think how much money you’ll save, not wasting it on arcade machines!!”

“I could manage the food right now, sir,” nodded David. His own shorts were whiter and considerably more fashionable than the older man’s, being the ones he wore for tennis on the rec. back home and which were kept well-laundered.

“You mean you won’t frown if I wear this dress?” asked Paula, and she vanished into the caravan’s bathroom to slip into the tiniest possible fragment of cloth that could still be rightly called a dress.

Her dad shuddered. He’d been a young man once and he knew the effect that a great deal of lovely female flesh can have on a male – and he was aware of the expression on David’s face as his daughter stepped out, clad in almost nothing and smiling broadly. And Paula was his daughter, and in his eyes, at almost eighteen she still needed a great deal of paternal protection, especially from young men with drives not unlike those he’d once had.

“Do you know what looking at you can do to a lad?” he asked, trying to sound severe, and failing.

She shook her head, innocently.

“Tell her, David,” muttered Mr Potts.

“You’re like an angel,” sighed David. Then he looked at the father. “She’s okay, sir,” he said quietly. “She’s with me and I won’t do anything to upset her. I promise.”

“Harrumph,” snorted her father, “I might have said that when I was your age, and meant it until the testosterone tap got turned on by a shapely pair of legs…”

“Dad!” exploded Paula, “David is not like that!”

“Come on, then,” he muttered doubtfully. “It’s a lovely walk along the beach and I know we’ll all enjoy it…”

“…or else…” growled Paula.

“It’ll be okay, love,” promised David. He’d never called her love before, and she noticed, and stared at him.

“All right, granddad,” she murmured.

The caravan site where they were staying was right against the beach and minutes later they were strolling along the sand. Paula’s father had led them down to where the summer waves were idly lapping on their retreat with the tide, leaving the sand firm beneath their feet.

“My dad, Granddad Potts, used to bring me here,” sighed the older man. “I dared say we’re now walking on the same sand that he used to walk me along when I was knee-high to a grasshopper.”

“When the world was black and white, dad?” teased Paula.

“Cheeky! Anyway, I remember once when his granny gave me a pair of swimming trunks she’d knitted. As far as I was concerned she was older than the hills, and I must admit to being a bit scared of her. I dared say I was … I don’t know, maybe six or seven years old.

“Anyway, I wore those swimming trunks and they were really very comfortable … until I got them wet, splashing in the sea. You know what knitted wool gets like when it’s wet? It sort of stretches and stretches until a pair of trunks that are comfortable on a lad of six would be too big for a sumo-wrestler of sixty! And that’s what happened to mine!

“The trouble is, she was with us at the time, hobbling along with a gnarled old walking stick, and my trunks kept trying to slip down to the sand. I had to hold them up with my fingers gripping really tight. And she saw me tugging them up and I dared say her eyes were getting dim and she wasn’t quite sure what I was doing.

The boy’s playing with himself, she announced to my father in a voice loud enough to waken the dead of the ages, don’t you think you should smack his legs?

“My dad said something to her, I can’t remember what, I probably didn’t hear because we weren’t along on the beach, and as I remember it loads of people, strangers, heard her and stared at me and my skinny white legs and wretched knitted swimming trunks, and I was blushing fit to burst!”

“I hope you’re not wearing the same shorts, dad,” laughed Paula, “they’re small enough, and to think you criticised my dress!”

“I’ve only had these a year or two!” retorted Mr Potts. “They’re the height of fashion!”

“They were when you bought them, dad,” laughed Paula, “and I reckon you only wear them about once a year and I remember you wearing them when I was in my pram!”

“Now, Paula, they’re more modest than that dress you’re wearing!”

“You know, dad, people have so many contrasting standards! You say this dress is too short, but wouldn’t say anything if I was wearing an itsy-bitsy-teeny-weeny-yellow-polka-dot bikini, which would cover up a lot less of me!”

“I think you look really nice anyway,” murmured David.

“The big problem is you’re my daughter, and I know the minds of testosterone-fuelled young males because I was one myself,” growled her father, “and wear a bikini on this beach at your peril! You’re not too old to get a smacked bottom, you know, for your own good!”

A laugh from a group walking behind them was proof that their conversation was being overheard, and Mr Potts chuntered inaudibly and accelerated towards the distant seaside town.

© Peter Rogerson 25.07.14


3 Responses to “A WALK ALONG THE BEACH”

  1. pambrittain July 25, 2014 at 6:04 pm #

    I’d be following too, just to hear the conversation.

    • pambrittain July 25, 2014 at 6:04 pm #

      Oh, I’ve seen a picture of you in shorts—great legs and knobby knees.

  2. Peter Rogerson July 25, 2014 at 8:46 pm #

    i wear shorts for as long as I can every Summer, knobbly knees or no knobbly knees

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