I opened my eyes. The golden sunshine was leaking into my bedroom through the single curtain, and was giving each separate piece of furniture a rich, yellow look. I groaned. But the groan gave way to pleasure as I realised… it was a Saturday! No school! No homework! Nothing to do at all, just sleep…sleep. I slowly rolled over and fell out of bed.
‘Well, I’m up,’ I thought, as I stood up. ‘Might as well take advantage of the fact.’ Half an hour later I was downstairs. My mother greeted me with her usual “Oh death! Where is thy sting?”
‘Bit unoriginal’, I thought, as I poured out a generous helping of Shreddies. And ‘Oh joyous day! Calloo! Callay! I poured out the little blue plastic figure. “This now belongs to me!” I exclaimed, proudly.
With breakfast over and clean teeth, my mouth and stomach were contented. But what about the rest of me? My hands wanted to do something a little more exciting than buttering bread, and my legs were urging me to give them some exercise. ‘How about a walk in the woods with a sketch book?’ I asked them, and they agreed. I gathered my ten inch by fourteen inch sketch book, a 2H pencil, and my father’s shooting stick, and trundled off to the woods.
I wandered around for some minutes taking in the smells of the countryside. The wild garlic, the newly mown hay, the pine-tree resin, the newly spread fertilizer. The newly spread fertilizer?! Anyway, I set up the shooting stick near an old rickety, falling down bridge that spanned the gap cut by a small stream and proceeded to draw. Various people passed me, some of them local, others tourists, but they all had one thing in common. They were nosey. However, I had nearly completed the masterpiece when a tourist came up to me and said: “That’s a might fine drawing you got there, young fella. You be willing to part with it, for a consideration?” He was American.
“Er. I’ll have to think about it. I’ll let you know when I’ve finished it,” I replied.
“Sure thing,” he smiled.
In the next few minutes thoughts raced through my head. Why is he interested in it? Perhaps he’s a big art dealer. How much shall I ask? None pounds would get me two L.P.s. He might think that’s too much. If so, five pounds? What if he’s having me on? What if he isn’t? Oh dilemmas!
“There!” I claimed. “It’s finished.”
“Great. Just great,” he smiled again. “How much?”
I was ready for that, “Ten pounds!”
“Done!” He cried.
You certainly have been I thought, as I carefully removed the page from the book. I handed it to him and he handed me two five pound notes. I thanked him. He thanked me. We said goodbye and went our separate ways.
My family all had different reactions. My father was proud. My sister was patently jealous and my mother said he was a fool, that American guy. I place the five pound notes in a secret place and wondered what to do next. An idea was not long in coming. “I’m going in to Whitby with my new found wealth,” I yelled to my parents. I boarded the train for which I only had to wait three minuted, and thirty minutes later I was in a record shop. I was just about to take my required records from the rack, when, on a mad impulse, I walked over to the sale records and found the same two, each at a pound cheaper. Needless to say I bought them there and then, and as I had more money left over than I has anticipated I could afford yet another record at sale price.
I left the record shop with three records in the bag, but I had overlooked one thing, I now no longer had my train fare home. What to do? Fare-dodge? Too risky. Telephone home? Yes. I was just about to enter a telephone box, when I happened to glimpse a blue car, similar to out next-door-neighbours-but-one. I looked at the number plate, and sure enough it was theirs! A voice behind me made me swivel round, and there behind me were my next-door-neighbours-but-one.
“Like a lift home?” enquired Ian, the father of the family.
“Why, thank you very much,” was my answer. On the journey home I told them of my day’s transactions and they were full of praise and polite admiration. Ian, being an art teacher, regretted not having seen the sketch, but he, nonetheless, was praising me.
When I returned home, it was tea-time, and so the family was made to endure my latest additions to my record collection, and to my pleasure inside the sleeve of one of the records I found the group’s latest single that was not on the L.P. I had not known it was there before. I listened to the records over and over again for the rest of the evening, mainly through headphones to get the full stereophonic effect.
Later that night, as I waited for sleep to engulf me I thought ‘I hope old Adams gives us an essay to write about the day when everything seemed to go right!’
Old Adams, indeed!! I have very much enjoyed reading this, M. Write English like this in your exam and you will get an A.
Mrs Adams was my English teacher, and she was correct. I got an A for my English language O level.
(c) M. Robert Gibson
This is a school essay.
It was written well before the internet. It is full of inaccuracies and assumptions; bad punctuation; bad grammar and a woeful lack of research, but, it is also a first draft. It was also hand-written in an exercise book, none of your fancy electronic gizmos back then.
And don’t forget, it was written by a schoolboy in a time before political correctness.
It is published here for purely selfish vanity reasons, so read it at your own peril and do not expect any great revelations.