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"A Scottish Wind in the Willows on high end skunk."

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"A fun and spooky read..."

"The characters are so involving and
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total gem of a read by an author who deserves a lot more recognition."


Monday, 11 December 2017

Hard graft for peanuts

'I explained to Val Nark that I didn't like being a modern apprentice toilet cleaner for £3.50 an hour.  What more can I learn, I said, once I know how to bleach and clean the U-bend?'
'I don't know,' I replied, unable to suppress a hint of pride. 'I've never cleaned a toilet in my life.'
'Val says there's all sorts to know about toilets though,' continued Tuppence. 'Starting with Thomas Crapper and moving right through'Shanks' to Dave Nark's chemical-free portaloo.'
'Oh yeah.'
'Yes.  The 'Nark' is basically an old-fashioned metal incinerator filled with straw or crumpled newspaper, with a seated compartment fitted inside.  Once the straw has reached maximum soil slash urine-saturation-point, or when the smell gets too bad, whichever  happens first, you set fire to it.  And then the whole cycle can start again.  One hundred per cent hygienic, no nasty 'compost pits' to dig, and no cleaning or harsh chemicals involved at any point.'
'Hey flaming presto.'
'Exactly Uncle Tuppy.  Isn't it wonderful?'
'Who knew.  You sound quite keen on the modern apprentice toilet cleaning and I've got to admit I'm disappointed in you, Tuppence.  In fact, I'm not just disappointed, I'm shocked, and I'll have to have a wee lie down.  Nobody in this family has ever, ever done hard graft for peanuts (or indeed anything) and I really think you're letting the side down.'  I folded my arms and glared at him sternly. 'We don't do cleaning and we don't do work.  I told you not to accept Val's modern apprenticeship offer, but would you listen? No you would not, and look where it's got you.  Thinking everything's rosy in the toilet world and accepting a pittance of £3.50 an hour.  Where's your pride Tuppence?  It's not like you've got a mortgage to pay.  You've got a roof over your head haven't you?  Food in your belly? I don't understand why you're even bothering.  You've gone right off piste Tuppence and I don't want to be controlling your life or anything but I don't like it and I have to tell you, it's unlikely to end well.'
'I've got plans Uncle Tuppy. Never fear.' Tuppence winked and tapped the side of his nose. 'And you know that when I do plans, I do 'em big.  There's more than £3.50 an hour and a roll of Andrex to be found in toilets, you mark my words.'
Whatever could he mean?

next time - Tuppence starts his own mobile lavatory cleaning business with a Raleigh pushbike, a plunger, a bottle of bleach (and is denied Universal Credit due to not reaching the low earnings threshold).  All is not what it seems, however.


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