No Walking Stick After Six

Written by Joseph McMeel

Thursday, 28 August 2014

The following story is based on real events, some of the names have been changed and changed back in order to confuse you of their identity. No elderly people were harmed in the telling of this story.

Frail. Feeble. A stark contrast from their buoyant youth. Their bodies since rejected them. The inspector again signing off on their case. This wasn't living. It was simply existing. Betty had battled her way across the room aided by her worn out walking stick. She had stopped half way before rambling to Molly, who was slumped in a scarlet armchair, 'Where was I going again?'

'Toilet Betty you had to go to the toilet,' perked back Molly, despite her seemingly in a slumber with her eyes shut tight.

'Ok ladies, that's all my notes drafted up,' said the suited and booted Gary. Grey suit, glasses, balding head Gary had been the DLA inspector for Betty and Molly for the past two years. Chat was minimal on his visits. A of the time his questions were met with incoherent answers about the beach or pea soup recipes.

'I will send through the normal notifications..' Gary stopped with his usual spiel as he noticed a large number unopened letters sitting on the coffee table in the centre of the room. Many of these are clearly marked HMRC what a post date of over six months previous.

He bid his farewells and left via the front door out onto Clogher main street. The village had terrace housing, numerous shops, pubs, butchers, a petrol station and chippy. The street itself was tar of course but had a steep incline. A home for elderly people was straight opposite Molly and Betty's residence. Despite their fragile state neither of the twin sisters cared to leave the home that they had grown so accustom too. Molly had bought the house with her now deceased spouse Tom. A nasty brain haemorrhage undetected. It was a massive funeral. The church filled up quickly and a lot of the congregation were forced to stand out the back during the service. Molly's spinster sister Betty moved in with her shortly after the months mind, so she had been occupant of the three bedroom two story dwelling for eight years.

A photo of the sister's in their prime was sat upon a mantel piece above their gas fire. Strawberry blonde hair, skin as white as snow, a few freckles on their nose, the only noticeable difference between them was that Molly sporting a pair of thick framed glasses. Now their hair was the snow white their face once was, both wore rounded glasses upon their now wrinkled face. Betty had made her way back to the chair just as the six o'clock news was beginning on the worn out box set that sat in front of them.

She turned to her napping sister.


'That time already?' quipped Molly.

With that the pair bounced to their feet and scuttled off to get ready. The walking sticks no longer needed. They changed, put on a bit of lippy, squirted on some coco mademoiselle and out the door to make the short walk to the pub.

They were met at the bar by the only other resident Paddy. Another of the white haired club. Paddy was 67 years old. A similar age to the twins.

'Ladies, drink?' he chirped with a wry smile.

'Oh Paddy, I'll have a gin,' replied Molly cheerily.

'Gin makes you sin Molly,' retorted her sister, which was met with hearty laughs from the trio.

'I'm not tied down anymore Beth, I can sin all I want.'

'Better make it a double Louis,' Paddy jested to the barkeep.

The bar was steadily filling up with similar cliental. Old timers in for their evening drinks. Louis' bar was usually packed with such from Monday to Thursday evenings. Without them the bar would be empty.

Beth was in the middle of telling a group about their latest DLA inspection.

One for group contributed 'God bless that Gary, easiest inspector to fool yet, if only he'd finish work a bit earlier than six o'clock so that we could get out and about a bit earlier in the day.' His comment met with a serious of nods.

Beth shouted over to the bar keeper 'Louis another round there please, also I might need your nephew Mark to come look at our TV, I think we may have ruined the big screen moving it out of the room this morning before the inspection.'

The walking stick might be needed to help them home.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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