Tag Archives: climbing frames

You heard the man: Anything Goes…

22 Sep

Vincent tells me (in a Comment on a recent Post) not to fret. On Sumpy, virtually ANYTHING goes, he reassures me. Thanks, buddy V.  Fair enough.

That being the case, let me tell you about an incident at the eastbound bus stop on Holdenhurst Road by ASDA, yesterday.

A little dude who was just emerging from toddler-hood into small-boy-hood (nearly 3 I guess) was putting his case for going into the Co-op shop at the gas/petrol station to make a purchase of some desired commodity.

His accompanying (28-year-old it turned out) male escort (I guess his Dad) was explaining that they were on their way to the big park where there was run-around space, plus swings and climbing frames.

The man was expert in his approach. Whilst holding the little guy by the shoulders to keep him from darting out into the forecourt, the man pressed his case for the park. It would be fun.

Over a period of about two minutes the youngster gradually calmed down. His father had never raised his voice. It was a perfect example of fathering.

Just as the yellow 2 bus hove in sight around the roundabout, the wino lady, who had been sitting on the seat outside the bus shelter and heard the young gentleman protesting bitterly, but could not have heard anything the man said, put in her oar.

“You don’t sound like a very caring father…”

The man recoiled in obvious shock. He suggested that she mind her on own business. The wino lady asked “How old are you mate?” The man answered “28”. She made an aside to the effect that she had children and grandchildren so she must know something about it. He was obviously in a shaken state as he followed me, with his lad, onto the bus.

Let me explain: Since the wino-occupied seat by the westbound stop was removed (on the opposite side of the road where the six-level student accommodation block replacing B&Q is three-quarters built) the winos have colonised the eastbound stop. It has the sunshine too.

I sat two rows back. The man took his son to the back seat. After the first stop, I dinged the bell and went back to say something:

“You’re an excellent father, mate. You did a great job.”

The hurt man looked up, somewhat soothed and perhaps a little startled I judge, and muttered something about “that woman…”

“Er, she is a wino anyhow” I said. “Her idea would have been to stuff her children with unhealthy sugar products…”

My stop was rapidly nearing so I turned to set off back for the front of the bus. The man said:


I turned back with a smile and a thumbs up. I was looking at two good friends for life, father and son, thanks to a father who was an expert. 

He probably took me for a wise old granddad who was an authority. He had no way of knowing that I am actually a dysfunctional pervert and that I routinely mess up in the area of human exchanges and relations, whether at work or just walking the street.

It certainly made ME feel better. It is the third occasion in my life where I have made a positive contribution. The first was in Bearwood, Birmingham, about 1962. The second was in Dunblane, Scotland, about 1980.

I wish I could have done more, really…