#24 Never accept massages from strangers

You can accept them from friends, relatives, lovers and qualified masseuses.

It’s summer 2004, we’re young, we’re free and anything is possible.  Your ma and I have landed ourselves prime parts in ‘The House of Bernada Alba’, her as Poncia (a 60 year old house keeper), myself as Martirio, (a bitter 24 year old with man troubles.)  Martirio’s problems are nothing compared to ours though. It’s summer 2004, we’re young, we’re free and anything is possible AND we are in BIG trouble.  We have not learnt our lines.

But also, we are young (line learning gets more difficult with age), we are free (no more school thanks to study leave) and anything is possible (even line learning.)  We make swift plans to meet during following week.  Two days later we arrive at Leamington Spa library, armed with a non-defeatist attitude and a vow to be more studious than ever before; we WILL conquer those lines.  We WILL NOT be in any more trouble.

We spend a good hour in the library, testing each other, learning, relearning, retesting, until:

Enter: a slightly odd man, stage left.  He moves a library chair in to the corner.  Removes a towel from his bag, carefully hangs it over the chair.  We watch intrigued.  He spots us and comes over.

Man: Hello ladies, I’d like to offer you ladies a massage.

Us: No, thank you very much.

Man: It’s free.  Come over here and I’ll give you a massage.

Us: No, thank you very much.

Man:  But, I don’t want any money.

Us: We really should be on our way.

Exeunt: Us.  

We stumble down the high street, linked arms,  in disbelief as we recount the whole bizarre shenanigan. Nothing quite that dramatic ever happens in Leamington Spa Library. There were any number of possibilities I suppose, but he was a stranger, and he offered us a massage and we said ‘No. (Thank you)’, and if the same thing ever happens to you, I would suggest you do the same.

(And yes, we did learn our lines.  Eventually.)


Spudge and Poncho:  Young, free: anything is possible.  We’ve got it covered. (2004)


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