Our Grumpy Man reflects on childhood memories

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Going for an 'ice cream'

Well, I’ve had enough of reading, watching, tracking and everything else about the pandemic so I’ve decided not to write about that for a couple of weeks.

What I’ve decided is to tell you a couple of stories that will eventually go into the book that supposedly I will write one day. My dad was a London Eastender. He was a bit of a criminal but not a very good one because he kept getting caught and finished up in prison. In fact, until I was about five, I thought he worked in the post office because I always saw him behind a glass partition when mum said we are going to see dad at work today. I also had a lot of ‘Uncles’ that used to come round and discuss a bit of business with the old man.

My favourite was Uncle Sammy, who always brought me sweets. On one occasion, when I was about seven, he came round with a truckload of stuff for my dad. After a bit of chit chat, my dad said to me that Uncle Sammy was going to Southend and would I like to go with him and get some ice cream and keep him company. I say asked. He actually said to Sammy- take the kid with you and buy him an ice cream. So off we went. Sammy delivered the stuff, I got my ice cream and I never gave it another thought until many years later when I was visiting my dad, who, by this time, was very ill with Parkinson’s.

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I told him I had this vague memory of this outing and asked my dad if my memory was correct. He laughed and said yes it was. I asked why it was funny and he then proceeded to tell me the reason I went. Uncle Sammy was a ridiculous gambler and couldn’t be trusted with money, so my dad, in his infinite wisdom, decided that as he didn’t want to deliver this lorry load of stolen property himself, he would give Sammy a ‘drink’ for delivering the stuff. He reckoned that if he took me he would have to bring me back and therefore wouldn’t be able to nick the money!

Give me your feedback if you would like to hear more of these stories whilst there’s nothing else happening in the world except for you know what!





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