THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM

THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM

The meeting room at the day centre was completely empty except for Chris the team leader. He was sitting waiting for the weekly class from the care in the community homes in the area. The attendance was only three or four each week but it fulfilled the treatment programme offered by the local authority.

     The door opened and he braced himself for the two hours of therapeutic conversation that was to come.

 

     “Come on there’s nobody here” Peter and Paul came in hand in hand and sat down side by side.

 

     In trotted Nancy on her pony, Topsy she tied him up to the radiator and sat down, still with her hard riding hat on.

     “Hello Peter” she said.

     “Paul” said Peter.

     “Whatever”

     “Why have you got your helmet on?” asked Paul.

     “You never know when you are going to have a fall and it’s better to be safe than sorry as my granny always used to say.”

 

     The door slowly opened again, a man dressed in a double breasted black mackintosh coat buttoned up to his neck with a large black hat pulled down over his face eased himself in. It was James he was a spy and still subject to the official secrets act.

     “Hello James” said Nancy “have you had a nice week?”

     “It’s a secret” was the reply in his boring monotone “I could tell you but then I would have to kill you. I know how to do that you know” He reached threateningly into his inside pocket took out a packet of cigarettes, opening it he took one out and lit it inside his coat, keeping his head bowed.

     “Let’s have a ciggy James” said Paul he took one “and one for Peter” he took another.

     “I’ll have one” Nancy grabbed the packet and put one in her mouth and one behind her ear. “That’s for Ron” she said “Later on”

 

      Suddenly there was a tremendous rattling of the door then finally it opened catching everybody’s attention. They all turned to see Mandy, dressed in a shocking pink leotard which seemed to be one size too small. Her huge bust was straining the seams to their limit.

      “Hello everybody it’s me and me boobies. Don’t they look good in this?”

       “Well me and Paul like ‘em it would be one each for us” said Peter

       “You rude boys you’re obsessed” said Mandy “What do you think James?

       “It’s a secret, I could tell you but then I would have to kill you. I know how to do that you know”

      “You wouldn’t want to do a fast trot on Topsy with those, blimey talk about jumbo milk shakes”. Nancy ran up and down the room bouncing her bosom and giggling.

 

   “All right everybody” Chris got their attention “settle down let’s talk about what you have done in the last week. Do you want to start Paul?”

 

     “Peter” said Paul. “We went to town shopping on Saturday, Paul started shoplifting again, I tried to stop him but he wouldn’t. The shop manager grabbed us, took us to his office and called the police. I told them it wasn’t me it was Paul but that he had gone. It was the same policewoman that we had last week, She was nice, she talked to the manager and made me give the things back and apologise. That was a shame ‘cos I really wanted that mousetrap. Then she gave me a lift back home in the police car, Paul was already there.”

 

     “Why did you want the mousetrap?”Chris asked

     “To catch mice of course”

 

     Chris sighed.

 

    “What about you Nancy what did you get up to?”

    “It was a nice day on Saturday, Me and Topsy went hacking, all over the Cotswolds and into the Malvern Hills”

    “Well that must have been exciting for you both” said Chris with a smile.

    “No, only for me Topsy got tired at Cirencester and caught the bus home”

 

     Chris let out another sigh.

 

      “What did you get up to Mandy?”

      “I was invited to the cinema by a handsome man I met on Saturday, so I got my best low cut frock out showing off me boobies, I’m a forty four double d you know and I’ve got a small back! Anyway enough about me boobies you all seem obsessed with ‘em, I waited in the hallway at the home until eight o clock. He never showed up so I went and watched Strictly Come Dancing and guess what, the man I was supposed to be meeting was on the show instead!”

 

     Chris let out an even bigger sigh.

 

     “Last but not least James, what exciting missions have you carried out this week?”

      “It’s a secret, I could tell you but then I would have to kill you. I know how to do that you know.” He patted his shoulder holster and gave Chris a threatening look.

 

     The rest of the meeting was taken up with smoking and drinking coffee. Everybody chatted about different things at the same time until Chris stood up, clapped his hands and wound up the meeting.

 

      “I think that’s all for today” he said then with an unconvincing “have a good time, see you all next week,” They were gone, Peter and Paul holding hands, Nancy trotting down the corridor on Topsy, James stealthily moving from doorway to doorway and Mandy strutting boldly along thrusting her ample bosom in front of her as she went.

 

     At last after they had all left Chris sat there alone wondering if he had made the right career decision. The door opened, Martin, Chris’ mate came into the smoke filled room.

     “How did it go?”

     “Same as usual, Peter still thinks he’s one of twins, Nancy brought her pretend pony ‘Topsy’ along, Mandy is still obsessed with her boobies, and James – well it’s a secret.                         

     They’re all as nutty as a Dundee cake but as long as they take their medication they’re harmless. Sometimes I think I’d be better off if I packed it all in and became a milkman”

    “Fancy a pint mate?” said Martin.

    “Too right I do – but first here’s that tenner you won the bet. I sat there for over two hours dressed as an elephant and not one of them noticed!” 

 

 1049 words Michael White 2020

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