Sunday, February 09, 2014

A Short Story about a Little Boy in a Canoe followed by an update on My Friend Rosey!


My contribution to this week's Sunday Whirl

He had a ‘to do’ list. Not a bucket list, he was far too young for one of those. He needed to prove to himself that he really could achieve the type of things that the other boys at school said he couldn't, and preferably without anyone looking on just in case he failed and suffered the embarrassment of them being right. Underneath that placid exterior there was a gutsy individual trying to get out. At least, that’s what he tried to tell himself. Time to escape from his routine.

He called it a river, but it really was a stream. And because of the exceptional rainfall of late, the flow was fast and as the water hit the protruding rocks it splashed upward in a million droplets and sparkled in the sunlight.

He sat for a few moments trying to pluck up the courage to launch himself in his little canoe. He'd found it abandoned on the bank a few weeks ago and hidden it. It was a dirty green colour and when he'd covered in branches and leaves it was invisible to anyone passing by. It was just a matter of waiting for the right time to do it and the right time was today. He sat there mesmerised by the splashing torrent before him.

With all the courage he could gather he pushed himself away from the edge and settled his shivering body into a reclining position as the gushing water carried him away and towards waterfall a few yards away. He screwed his eyes shut and grasped the sides of the little craft. It took off as fast as any fairground ride he’d watched but never dared to try. Suddenly it slowed, twisted around, and stopped. But the water continued to gush past, crashing against the canoe and soaking him to the skin. He looked around. He was caught up in a tangled mass of branches and bows. Then something glinted on the surface of a swirling pool set into the bank a few feet away. It looked like gold ring with a diamond at its centre. He leaned out trying to grasp it, as the icy water continued to relentlessly smash against his face. He just managed to grab it, but it was caught on something. He tugged with all the strength he could gather and just managed to raise whatever was trapping it above the surface. He soon discovered what it was caught on. A hand. He sat there stunned, the spraying splashing torrent now going unnoticed. Then suddenly with a jerk part of a body came into view. A pair of lifeless eyes stared menacingly at him.

Then he woke up, still on the stream’s bank and decided to save his adventure for another day – maybe.


If you've been following  the escapades of My Friend Rosey over past few years you will know that she works as an assistant to a schoolteacher with a class of twenty or so bouncy nine and ten year olds. You will also be aware that when she ‘gets down with them’ as she calls it, she often reverts to childhood herself which is why she is so popular with her charges. The trouble is, she gets so involved that she often picks things up from them. I don't mean coughs and colds, although that does happen occasionally. No, I mean for instance ways of speaking. Just recently she has adopted the irritating use of the word ‘like’ as an embellishment to every sentence she utters. She goes (sorry, I meant to say she says - even I'm at it now!) ‘I was like doing this and like this happened and I’m like…….’ Grrrrr! I reminded her that according to the Oxford English Dictionary the primary use of ‘like’ is as a preposition meaning similar to. She then screwed up her nose, put on her sourest expression and told me I was getting old! The cheek of it! So I said to her ‘do you like like licking lollipops and like lemons like?’ It fell on stony ground!

The other irritating thing she’s picked up is the growing use of the word ‘so’ when starting a sentence. This I think she has picked up from media commentators on the telly. I said to her ‘So, do you still like to like sew?’ She grinned at me and told me I was a so-and so. I guess I had that coming!

Anyway, I've been meaning to tell you that she’s got a new boyfriend. We've not met him yet. You may recall a couple of years ago I mentioned the time she excitedly told us about a new beau who she claimed was a barrister. We were all very impressed until we found out he was in fact a barista at Starbucks!  Not that there’s anything wrong with that you understand, it just that… well, you know!  Now her new chap is apparently a pleasant enough bloke in his early forties. We don’t know much more about him yet, but we'll start probing soon and I’ll report back to you. She told us that he is a conductor. Bearing in mind the confusion I described above, I thought I should establish straight away whether he waved a baton or checked tickets on a train. He is in fact, in his spare time, the former and has recently taken the post of leader of the Rosey’s choir! What his actual full time job is, the one which pays the bills and buys Rosey’s chardonnay, we have yet to find out mainly because Rosey doesn't seem to know herself! She said she asked him and it sounded so complicated that she just nodded knowingly and promptly forgot!

This weekend five of us are meeting in Rosey’s allotment shed for a drink and a chat, so we may find out more then - provided that is, the floodwater has cleared and the shed re-joins terra firma! I’ll keep you informed!

To read loads more stories about My Friend Rosey click HERE!


  1. A dream like the would turn me away from the water as well!!

  2. I wonder whether kids still do those things we used to, even in their dreams? It was a job to keep us home with so much adventuring to do. Rosey I am sure will break many hearts before she settles down with a Mr. Right. Those little fads and mannerisms will pass (Soon, I hear you thinking!)

  3. It's a rare kid who can sneak away to have an adventure these days, but one like that should definitely be kept in one's morbid imaginings!

  4. Water water everywhere..damn stuff..I think a stiff drink is just the glad to see Rosey again though!



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