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Torfaen Tales


“What’s the matter?” my friend said. “You look as if you’re going to explode!”

“Matter?” I said. “Matter? That fella next door wants locking up! The flaming idiot accused me of dropping snails into his garden. It wasn’t me, honest, it was the missus, gently placed the slimy things over the fence she did, in the dark, mind you. ‘I don’t like harming God’s creatures,’ she said. Well she’s been harming me for years and I’m one of God’s creatures, aren’t I? Couldn’t say that though, could I? But I digress. This fool stood in front of me, defying me to push him out of the way he was. ‘You’ve been dropping snails over my fence, and there’s no good you denying it, so you needn’t try.’ Well I ask you, as if I would. ‘They’ve been eating the tops of my carrots,’ he ranted. ‘And my greens.’ Pity, that, I muttered under my breath. You won’t be able to enter them at the Horticultural Show next week, all the better for my chances. ‘Well,’ he said. ‘What are you going to do about it?’

It was at this point that I noticed his cheeks were getting redder and redder. I know he’s got blood pressure because he goes to the same clinic as Mrs Williams down the road, she informed me one day after I stupidly asked her how she was feeling. She’s the sort to tell you in detail, I’ve tried to steer clear of her ever since she had a hysterectomy six months ago. I don’t want to be bored by her explanations of the working of her womb, do I? It was bad enough when the wife had it done. God she made a fuss, not about the operation but, as she put it ‘I can’t have any more children.’ Well I ask you! ‘Children!’ I said to her. ‘Children! You’re sixty two. What do you want more children for? We’ve got seven, isn’t that enough for you?’ That was a big mistake on my part. Her reply was ‘Men! You’re all the same, you don’t know what it’s all about.’ No, thank God, I thought, so to sort of cheer her up I said how do you know we’re all the same, how many men have you been with then? That was my second mistake. I got a clout around the ear.

Well, to get back to that idiot next door, it was just then a thought ran through my mind. What if I suggested to him that he put them in a box and sent them to France? One of my mates told me that they eat them out there, disgusting devils, they boil them alive, so he said, poor little dabs, but there, that’s the French for you, messy sods those Froggies. Someone told me men and women share the same toilets, they said your head and shoulders are in full view of the street, bit unusual that, not natural, is it? I mean you’ve got to have a bit of decency, haven’t you? Well I was just about to ask him what he wanted me to do about the slimy things when his wife came to my rescue. Called him from their front door she did. ‘It’s all right, Harold. I’ve sorted it out, I’ve thrown the messy things back over the fence.’ I feel sorry for those snails, poor little devils, don’t know if they’re coming or going, they’re more airborne than Richard Branson’s airline. I think I’ll gather them up and take them up the allotment, there’s a chap up there with some smashing vegetables. Well, must go, see you around some time. Cheerio!

by Richard Jones

Forthcoming Events

Generation Games Exhibition

27/04/2018 - 28/10/2018
This exhibition is a history of home computer games consoles throughout the ages

Roger Cecil - Art

02/06/2018 - 21/07/2018
Roger Cecil - this exhibition will show his extraordinarily beautiful paintings alongside jewellery and 3d work which has never been exhibited.

Pontnewydd Progressive Walk

A moderate intensity 5 mile walk led by a qualified walk leader starting from and returning to the Queen Inn, Upper Cwmbran.

Blaenavon Health Walk

A low intensity 1 to 2 mile walk led by a qualified walk leader starting from and returning to the Blaenavon Heritage Centre.
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