BURTS DAY TRIP

Burt boarded the train

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Feeling a little excited on his nostalgic journey up to the big city

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It’d been a long while since his feet had trampled these golden paved streets so he consulted the oracle.

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Walking over Westminster Bridge, he noticed some things had changed since his last visit.

( 1973 City scape can’t be replicated so I’ll just have to time warp it!)

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The only form of suitable travel for an old sailor – a Thames boat trip.

Along the longest river in England and the birthplace of an Empire.

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A quick snack and the journey begins.

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Some bloomin’ weird building on the skyline, new fangled gimmicks!

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Ah, at last some proper architecture – thats more like it.

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St. Paul’s Cathedral – built after the great fire of London in 1666 by Sir Christopher Wren and took over 30 years to complete. As a major landmark, fell foul of a couple of direct hits in the Blitz but amazingly survived the bombing.

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Burt saluted as he sailed past the HMS Belfast, first commissioned in 1939, just before the outbreak of the War; many of his old shipmates had served on her.

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Now she is a permanently moored museum ship, open to the public since 1971.

Burt was impressed.

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The Union flag flies proudly on the Jackstaff of HMS Belfast.

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“How very civilised, there’s even a bar aboard, for a well deserved toast – it would be rude not to.”

“Cheers, me hearties!”

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Burt’s heart beat a little faster as they sailed around the river bend to the final stretch of his journey – with its the familiar masts piercing the clouds.

Welcome to Greenwich

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The Cutty Sark – named after a wanton witches short skirt by Robert Burns himself.

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The last and fastest Tea clippers to China, built in Scotland in 1869 before turning to trade in wool from Australia. She held the record time from China to Britain for 10 years until the beginning of steamships.

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She is one of the last three remaining original composite construction ( wood hull over a metal frame) left in the world, now in dry dock as a ship museum at Greenwich.

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The Greenwich Royal Naval College (1873 – 1998) before it served other purposes.

On this site was Greenwich Palace, the birthplace of King Henry Vlll, Queen Mary l and Queen Elizabeth l

Later the Royal Hospital of Seamen at Greenwich was created by Queen Mary ll in 1692, after she was emotionally moved seeing wounded sailors returning from the Battle of La Hogue.

Designed (again) by Sir Christopher Wren and built between 1696 – 1712, often thought the  “finest and most dramatically sited architectural and landscape ensemble in the British Isles” – so it must be true.

‘It’s a bit busy today’, he thought.

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Burt wasn’t shy and asked a passer by to take a commemorative snap of his visit today.

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“Greenwich meridian – my foot!”

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“And that bus is about to go.”

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“Now, where to next?”

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“Not here, presumably?”

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“Or here….which way to the river, matey?”

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“That’s better.”

As the sun comes out to warm the blood.

Burt is safely aboard on his return journey and has even found the bar ….again.

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Life is good, time to chill as he passes under Tower Bridge

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In the company of some lovely ladies.

*wink wink*

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This is the life

If you can’t have the ocean, a river will do.

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The Tower of London is a historical sight to make you shudder…traitors gate and the crown jewels.

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Back to dock near that London Eye ( again)

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A final nod to Admiral Lord Nelson on top of his column, he did our country proud and deserves our homage.

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Burt has 40 or even 50 winks on the train ride back.

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©Juliette Dodd 2019

 

  • NOTE – this SindySnap.Wordpress site is now totally full – if you want to follow the further stories and adventures please go to at http://www.sindysnap2.home.blog – thank you ❤

P.S We even saw a seal swimming in the Thames but was too slow to snap it

 

 

 

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WINTER WALKIES

Whether they wanted to or not, Sindy and Barry donned big coats and took Brutus to the park. The young boxer was enjoying his first taste of proper snow, pulling eagerly ahead and sniffing around in the white coldness.

Sindy and Barry walk Brutus – Version 2

Barry was more than excited and immediately started making a big snow man, although to Sindys growing annoyance he fashioned it into a snow woman, chuckling like a naughty child.

“Barry, have you done now?” She kept asking with a disapproving tone, Brutus was pulling on the lead wanting to join in Barry’s fun and games.

“Just another stick arm to find, Sind,” He was totally oblivious to her sour face and rolling eyes.

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Happily singing to himself a popular hit of the day,

“Wig wam bam, gonna make you my man…” Ken appeared from behind a bush, mincing around the far end of the frosty park, taking his little Willy out for a play.

“…Wam bam bam, gonna get you if I can.”

Ken had a sweet little curly chap, of which he was very proud and kept it beautifully clipped and coiffured.

His dog was a miniature poodle called Willy.

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Meanwhile, Barry had completed his duck headed snow woman, totally immersed in his work and ignoring frozen numb hands, while Sindy only huffed stamping her feet and wishing she’d worn her boots.

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Barry could swear he saw Burt in the distance.

Yes it was Burt, doing his good deed and taking Dolly’s St. Bernard for it’s morning stroll. The old dog was nearly blind and a bit slow.

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Considering the weather, it was actually getting quite busy for an afternoon, all dogs need walking and ladies liked the social side and colour co-ordinating their winter outfits.

Barbie T and Spot, always chic and demure trotting along on route into town.

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Athletic Stacey jogging after her eager beagle Bob, while enjoying the winter sun and bird song.

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She suddenly turned the bend and came upon Barry’s cheeky modern art masterpiece which made her smile.

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Dogs being dogs, they had to have a sniff and a greet, while the girls smiled and made weather related small talk; Barry was still engrossed by finishing with a carrot nose that kept falling off.

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Barbie B and Wolfie – looking a picture of loveliness, daintily strolling near the frozen pond.

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“Hi Barbie,” Ken waved wildly, his little Willy rubbed up against her husky.

“Ken dear, just the man I wanted to see, can you book me in for a blow dry, I’m such a mess?”

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Before he had time to answer, burly Brutus barged into the group, barking and growling at the new dogs, Sindy apologised while Barry pulled on the lead until the inquisitive pup calmed down.

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The noise attracted the other four legged park users and before you knew it there was a writhing pack of different breeds excitedly making acquaintance. Barbies and Stacey were old friends and Ken was known to all.

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Now the small problem of a massive knot, things were getting a little tangled as the dogs went into a greeting frenzy, tugging and straining and sniffing galore.

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Suddenly the pack spied a lone unsuspecting pussy cat, in an instant they were off, full pelt doing what dogs love best – chasing!

Amid the shocked gasps of the loving owners not even Barry was quick enough to keep hold of the lead.

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Running after the pack he was quickly followed by Sindy, oh those bad dogs were worse when they were together.

“Heel, heel!” They ignored him.

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Burt had seen the whole sorry episode from a distance and ambled over.

“No point hanging around in the cold, young Barry will bring them all back, let’s go and wait in the pub by the gate.” it wasn’t a very big park and there was only one entrance.

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Dolly, long time landlady of ‘The Puppet Masters Arms, whose main customers were  thirsty dog walkers and some odd young chaps at the weekend.

Burt was an old friend and often helped Dolly out since she’d been left on her own, taking her big but elderly dog for slow walks in exchange for a pint or two. Burt had a good heart.

“New customers, Doll.” he greeted her, taking the large but stinky hound out the back.

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Outside Barry and Sindy had managed to entice the pack back with some whistles and  reunited them all with their pleased owners. Panic over and everyone relished the idea of a warm pub to recover.

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“What’ll you have, girls?” Burt offered, he didn’t need to put it on, he was naturally suave.

The cosy yet drab pub was comforting, most of the group hadn’t been in there before ( except Ken on a late weekend)

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Sindy burst in breathless as Brutus and the other dogs sniffed all around this new place of many smells.

“Well done, young lady,” Burt congratulated her efforts.

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“Barry, get me a Ginger wine, that’ll warm me up a bit.”

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Barry checked his pockets but he knew he didn’t have a penny, he’d put the last of his wages on a dead cert but the horse fell at the 3rd jump. He’d been hoping Sindy’s mum would feed him for the rest of the week.

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Barry was getting a bit worried, he dared not confess as she’d blow her nut, Sindy ( and her mum) didn’t approve of gambling as they never stopped reminding him.

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“Burt, can I ask a favour?”

“What’s up, lad?”

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Burt tutted and shook his head.

“Now you know I’ve already told you to stay away from the Bookies, a fool’s game!”

“Yeah, yeah but I’m brassic, it’s only till payday.”

“Sorry mate, I’m a bit short myself.”

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“Sindy darling, I forgot my wallet, be a love and lend us a fiver?”

This wasn’t the first time she’d had to help out her forgetful boyfriend but luckily she’d been a Girl Scout and was always prepared – with a 2p coin for the phone, a pen and an elastic band.

“I’ll buy them Barry.”

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Burt was deep in conversation, Barry had no choice.

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“Hi Dolly, your hair still looks lovely, you really should get a nice lilac rinse next time.” Ken always noticed these things.

“Aww, Kenny I did think about it, what’ll you have petal, the usual?”

“Yes, Babycham with a cherry please.”

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Barry stared in disbelief, he’d never heard of a man ordering a Babysham!

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“Here you are Barry, make it last but you know you shouldn’t drink in the day.”

Oh the shame, being bought drinks by Sindy and getting a lecture in front of all these single ladies. Barry wasn’t a happy bunny.

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“Can I have a pickled egg and a sausage?”

“Of course but they’re for the doggies, dear.” Barry was a bit disappointed as his tummy was rumbling .

Sindy shot him a disapproving glare as he scoffed the egg, he forgot she couldn’t stand them… and the aftermath.

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Barry finished his beer and really, really wanted another but couldn’t ask, he already  knew Sindys answer.

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So he just fed the eagerly waiting dogs sausages, poor Barry, with everyone watching he couldn’t even have a sneaky bite.

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Burt and his new glamourous friend left the chatting pub almost in a rush, Burt had that look which Barry had seen a few times before, like a snake hypnotising it’s prey, Svengali eat your heart out.

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“,,,and you can make my hair really shiny Ken?”

“Oh yes sweetie, I have a new product just arrived in, it’s what all the film stars are raving about, it can even tame you’re…uh….type of hair.”

“It’s gone all frizzy, I must look a fright.” Sindy needed to be loved and pampered and Ken could offer her one of those.

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“I’m off to Ken’s to get my hair done, see you at the weekend and we can go shopping.”

Barry stood speechless… as she left abruptly with Ken.

Shopping indeed!

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“What a lovely couple.” Dolly commented as the door shut, “And no dear, we don’t do a tab here.”

Barry hadn’t even asked.

Dolly had been a Landlady for a very long time.

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©Juliette Dodd 2019

 

Burt – FLASHBACK – part 2

Friday evening at the extremely elegant Galerie d’Art Moderne, Maurice surveyed his Masterpieces with a self satisfied air.

Fifi the gallery curator, was excited about tonights Grand opening. All the most illustrious dignitaries of Paris were invited, including Charles de Gaulle.

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“Monsieur Moreau, c’est magnifique.” She purred, proudly admired her arrangement of his paintings.

“Yey, lass it looks greet, when does this do start?” He didn’t like waiting around.

The first guests began to arrive immediately, even though it was fashionable to be late, Maurice already had many female fans desperate to spend time alone with him.

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“Oh Maurice,” called a couple of barefoot Beatnik chicks.

He was very big with the underground youth movement, all the hep cats really digged his new vibe and loved his jazz beat, he was heralded as the voice of the scene.

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Now he was happy, being adored by beautiful girls who hung on his every word and laughed at his jokes, even if they didn’t really understand his broad Lancashire accent.

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“You are the greatest artiste Maurice, when will you paint me?”

Word had already got around, mainly from Barbie, that he was ‘painting’ all the Paris beauties, it was a converted honour to be a chosen one.

“Why don’t you both come together, a couple of fit lasses like you would be greet.”

Maurice was magnetic and oozed sex appeal.

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Still early, Burt made his way across the empty space, glancing at the paintings suspiciously.

All he could see were coloured shapes – like a child’s wooden blocks.

“Oreet, glad you could make it, what d’ya think lad?” Maurice greeted his rival jovially.

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“This is Fifi, she’s me agent.”

“Bonjour Monsieur,” Maurice slipped off to whisper to the Beatnik girls.

“I present you Maurice’s pièce de résistance, a work of unsurpassed genius.” Fifi did the heavy sell, it was her job and she was excellent at it.

Burt studied the large canvas, no he still didn’t get it, no matter how hard he tried although the price tag made him whistle.

How much!

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Later, alone in the now empty gallery, Fifi congratulated Maurice,

“Bravo Maestro, we’ve sold the whole collection.”

Maurice smugly puffed out his chest at how easily he’d painted that lot, he’d knock another load up next week. The Art world is all pot luck but having a good agent helped, 50% of nowt is nowt, he thought.

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Even later that same night, this multi-talented phenomenon wowed all the crazy cats with his inspired bongo beats, they danced like no tomorrow to his hypnotic hot jazz groove.

Poets, painters and patrons thronged the hip pad of the main man, quoting Kerouac, planning improvised happenings and swinging with the sisters, all cooking in the turgid stew pot of Paris night life.

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“Far out Daddy-o”

“He’s so tuned in.”

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“Too round to be square.”

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Fingers snapped to the catchy beat, lithe bodies swayed snakelike as the hypnotic rhythm enfolded them into a frenzied altered state.

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“Dig that beat.”

“It’s crazy man, crazy.”

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Burt sidled into the crowded sweaty room almost unnoticed, it was if he could smell free beer and always on the look out for free love, French girls were so different.

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“Maurice is one cool cat,” the barefoot Beat chick hovered close by him, elbow to elbow with the overly possessive Barbie.

“Oui, he is my man.” Almost hissing, she had her claws out ready to protect her territory, a very valuable commodity in this district – a rich artist.

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Burt stood nervously, feeling very out of place.

“Don’t you just love Maurice?” She asked.

“Don’t really know him.” Burt replied.

“He is new, visionary, his work is the future, all Art gone before should be burnt, it’s so inferior, only Maurice is a true creator everyone else is a square.  What do you do?”

Burt took a big swig of beer and mumbled he was a decorator.

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Burt glanced back, Barbie didn’t even notice him, all the women only had eyes for bongo playing Maurice – with his little goatee, his sandals and sheepskin, his simple shapes – stupidly expensive shapes!

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She was right of course, that was the future, that was modern Art – the new age incarnation.

Now in this moment the realisation hit him like wet fish.

Burt made his mind up, he would leave this life of decadent disappointment and return home, his father had wanted him to follow in the family tradition and join the Navy. Why not? There must be more to this world than Art?

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~*~

Back to today, back to reality, Burt rummaged in his old sailors trunk, where he sentimentally kept a few keepsakes and papers.

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Yes, that was so long ago, before the sea engulfed him in it’s sublime saltiness …ahh beautiful French Barbie, she truly broke his young heart.

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©Juliette Dodd 2019

Burt – ‘FLASHBACK’ – Part 1

Saturday afternoon and Burt’s young companion cajoled him into visiting a newly opened trendy Modern Art Gallery in town, on the promise of a pub lunch afterwards.

Grudgingly Burt accompanied his lovey lady friend to the sparse white interior.

Suddenly he spied a familiar painting and stopped dead in his tracks.

“It’s the wrong way round” Burt muttered.

“How do you know, it’s an abstract.” Laughed the girl.

“Because I knew the Artist.”

“Oh!” She exclaimed, not sure whether to believe him or not.

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Later that night Burt’s mind wondered back through the mists of time after his unexpected trigger to his long distant youth.

Way back before he joined Her Majesty’s Service, before he became a salty sailor and married the sea. Once upon a time, long ago Burt had followed his hearts passion and lived in Paris, earnestly trying to become a great artist.

The year was 1959 and Burt was 25.

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Burt was smitten by his beautiful model Barbie, she posed for all the eager young artists around Montmartre, at night she was one of the saucy entertainers at the famous Moulin Rouge, during the day she earned her money being a muse.

Maybe it was love?

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“J’adore mon chéri, maybe paint my lips more rouge..red and my nose not so big?” Barbie suggested although this cut him to the quick.

Young Burt was a sensitive soul and wore his Art on his sleeve.

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“Yeah sure, I can change it, if you really want me too.”

Crestfallen he instinctively yearned for another bottle of the cheap red wine all artists consumed.

“No cherie, c’est bien, it’s…how you say, nearly perfect, trés bon.” Barbie could see his disappointment at her flippant remark.

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“Can you model again tomorrow? I want to start a new painting, wear your sexiest undies.” Burt was quite upfront with his requests.

“Maybe after 2, I’m modelling for a new artiste all morning ….he is so avant-garde, unique, like no-one I’ve met before, the man is a genius!” A serious claim indeed, Burt now immediately hated him.

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Later that week, after a few intense session Barbie took a well earned break from the arduous job of staying still.

“Ooof, my hand is so stiff from holding le téléphone, ” she complained. “Maurice never asks me to do hard things.”

“Who is Maurice?” young Burt asked, not really interested but trying to change the subject, he was so broke he couldn’t really pay her today.

“Maurice Moreau, the great artiste, you must have heard about him?”

“No,” He sounds like a twat, thought Burt, resenting his catchy name.

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“Maurice is so innovative, he never paints what he sees.”

“No?” Burt answered uninterestedly.

“He paints the essence,” Barbie babbled on in an excited way,

“He is so esoteric, everyone is talking about him.”

“His work makes all this look so …passe, old.” she gestured to Burt’s latest painting without realising the insult she’d thrown.

When she’d gone Burt floated his wounded ego in cheap vino to quell his inner rage.

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The following week Burt was heavily involved in a massive canvas – again using this lovely muse as the main subject.

“When will you pay me, mon chérie?”

“As soon as I sell some of my painting Barbie love, you know how it is”

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“Mon deiu! I have heard that before, you starving artists are all the same, huh!” Barbie puffed crossly, she wanted to get a new dress with matching bag, shoes and wrap.

Suddenly a loud and forceful knock at the door distracted the mounting tension, before Burt had a chance to answer it, in strolled a large solid looking man.

“Maurice, you found me!” exclaimed Barbie, smugly fluttering her eyelashes, she loved to be pursued by her suitors.

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Burt had expected Maurice Moreau to be French but he answered in a distinctly Lancashire accent.

“You went off with me keys lass.”

“Did I?” Barbie knew she had, she just wanted him running after her in front of Burt ( the naughty lady)

The two men, or shall I say ‘Love rivals’, glanced at each other uncomfortably,

“Maurice, this is Burt, he’s an artist too.” Introducing them was a bit like mixing oil and water but she was curious to see the result.

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Maurice puffed up his broad chest while eyeing the surrounding artwork in Burt’s attic studio.

“Well I can see who it is, so that’s a bonus.” Barbie laughed loudly although that wasn’t supposed to be a joke.

“I told you Burt was talented, ” She played one against the other,

“He’s made me tres belle, oui?” she shamelessly fished for compliments.

“Yeah, yeah, old school, playing it safe is easy.”

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Burt poured some local wine from a large carafe, handing a glass out to this uninvited guest, Maurice took one swig,

“Bloody ‘ell lad, this’ll rot your innards for sure.”

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“Have you been in Paris long?” Burt asked, making non art related small talk.

“Just a month, it’s bloody cold in Preston this time o’ year.”

“How do you find it here then?”

“Swell lad, I’ve got a major exhibition up that Champs Elyesse, come along to the opening night this Friday, in Galleria d’Art Modern.”

Maurice looked the part, dressed the part and actually was living the dream.

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“Yeah sure, I’ll come, will there be a free bar?” Then Burt agreed, he still didn’t quite know if he hated this man or just deeply resented his very existence.

Especially when he left arm in arm with the beautiful Barbie, off on a raucous evening to all the fashionable cafés and nightclubs in the district.

Burt only had a tin of sardines, yesterdays baguette and another bottle of the cheapest red as solace.

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All alone, he pondered his recent paintings…maybe Maurice was right and this was all old fashioned and boring….deep seated doubts set in to his wine fuddled psyche.

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Burt drank himself into a right tizz.

What was he doing? Where was he going? The room swimmed in Technicolor – but at least  he remembered to clean his brushes in the midst of his artistic crisis ( always a bonus)  Just before he blacked out in a chasm of dark angst ridden questions.

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Tomorrow, he resolved to up his game and go along to Maurice’s Art show opening.

What had this chap got that he hadn’t?

Burt was soon to find out.

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To be continued …

 

©Juliette Dodd 2019

‘BARRY THE BOXER’

Barry had kept his training a secret from Sindy, his lovely yet sensitive girlfriend. She doesn’t approve of violence and especially not fighting so Barry told her he was going to a chess club three evenings a week.

Encouraged by his old friend and now trainer Burt, Barry was at the peak of physical fitness and ready for his first professional Boxing match.

Tonight at the Blood Lust Arena he was up against the reigning Middleweight Champion, Malcolm the Merciless

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Malcolm and his team of preened Gym bunnies were serious stars of the Ring, always drawing in big crowds of avid fans, many of whom were woman. He also got on the cover of quite a few fashion magazines promoting his own unisex sportswear range.

There was even talk of a record contract.

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The Arena was buzzing with excitement and Malcolm loved every minute of this adoration, his ego was nearly as big as his well oiled biceps.

Making his dynamic way to the ring amid cheers and the sirens of his rousing theme song – ‘Blockbuster’ by the macho glam band Sweet.

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‘You better beware, you better take care, you’d better watch out if you’ve got long black hair.’

Malcolm milked his entrance and even did a little synchronised dance with his sidekicks – the audience screamed even louder.

‘ Does anyone know the way, theres got to be a way to Blockbuster.’

She threw her bra, he caught it in his teeth.

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“Later doll, ‘ he winked, she swooned.

He was one smooth operator and the whole room was in his hand.

( He may have stolen some of his best moves from Elvis but no one noticed)

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Meanwhile in the Ring Barry was quietly waiting for the showbiz charade to finish. He was a veritable bag of sinews, nerves and adrenalin pumping fiercely around every artery and vein while being silently encompassed by Burt’s calm presence.

Barry was ready, his taut form eager.

The bell rang.

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Fancy footwork and crowd pleasing gyrations as Malcolm the Merciless spun and slid around Barry, trying to confuse this serious challenger.

Jab, jab, cross

Suddenly Malcolm felt Barry’s quiet fury.

And tasted blood.

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They bobbed and weaved, dancing around the ring and around each other.

Punch and counterpunch, blow for blow

DING.

Burt whispered sound advice but Barry was almost deaf to the noise, his ears was ringing and his hatred for the stupid Malcolm twerp was bubbling in a soup of annoyance and rage.

Round Two

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‘Right’ thought Barry, ‘It’s now or never.’

Barry went for the body, blow after blow, Malcolm threw a few back but took the brunt of Barry’s forceful determination. His face suddenly became serious as he realised Barry wasn’t one of the usual newcomers.

They gave the crowd exactly what they’d paid to see, it was brutal.

Left hook, jab jab, jab – right hook, Malcolm reeled back on the ropes just as the bell rang, saving his dignity, albeit briefly.

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Barry was there, totally focussed, he had a plan. Malcolms weakness was all too obvious now, after a few rounds Barry had him sussed (weak ankles)

“Go in with an uppercut then a left hook….” Burt offered but Barry had his own recipe brewing.

DING!

Round Three

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Taking the lead Barry threw fake punch after fake punch which really shook the willies out of  Malcolm, as he bounced off the ropes trying to avoid the now almost playful Barry.

Jab jab shoeshine, Malcolm gets a little too confident, totally underestimating Barry.

Wham – uppercut to the chin.

He’s down

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Barry hugs the ropes while the count starts.

‘…..nine, ten.’

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‘THE WINNER – BARRY THE….BOXER”

Yeah! The crowd went wild, no one imagined Malcolm would be defeated and in just three rounds, this was one for the books.

Barry didn’t have a nickname or a fancy theme song, the cheers were enough to fill the Arena.

The sound team played a current hit and the crowd boogied in the aisles

‘Looking for some Hot stuff baby, this evening,

I need some Hot stuff, baby tonight.’

Was that a little smile from Barry? Its hard to tell.

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As he made his way victoriously back to the dressing room, avid fans grasped at his hands, Barry was a bit overwhelmed by the attention

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Behind the scenes Burt checked Barry over for any hidden injuries and salved his bruises.

‘Hi Barry’,  a vision in lurex entered the room, ” I just want to congratulate you and invite you to my after party, held in your honour?”

“Err yes, sure.” Barry stammered.

“We’ll be out in a minute Miss.” Burt ushered her to leave while he sorted his protege Barry.

“You’ll have to watch these ladies Barry my lad, they’re only after one thing.”

Barry perked up.

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Cleaned up and tended Barry appeared in a towelling robe, the VIP room was buzzing with the Boxing elite and all the beautiful people.

“Barry, darling, I’m Stacey and I’m now your number one fan, tell me all about yourself, I’m all ears…and eyes…you are SO fascinating, let me feel a winners muscles?”

Barry was quite overwhelmed with the attention.

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At the other end of the VIP room , a small commotion broke out when Malcolm and his minders were only hassled by a young lad wanting him to come and judge a disco dancing contest at the YMCA.

No ladies seemed interested in his losing skills, odd that?

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“Barry, you are SO physical,” Purred the red haired siren, as she ran her fingers down his firm chest.

Barry just stood there, petrified and desperately trying to work out what to say to Sindy tomorrow.

How would be explain the bruises and it’ll be in the papers?

She’ll be so disappointed  and probably really cross.

But that was tomorrow.

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©Juliette Dodd 2019

SINDY – Model Exposure ~ a cautionary tale

Sindy was always being told by her friends that she was so pretty and should be a model. Her head was getting a little bit big with all the flattery, she decided to get some professional photos taken to send to model agencies.

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The thought of being a fashion model in magazines really appealed to her as well as the celebrity lifestyle that went hand in hand with that glamorous career.

Sindy looked in the local paper and found an advert, she rang the number and spoke to a lady.

“Yes please, I’d like some nice photos to make up a portfolio…yes glamour and portrait and some fashion ones, a selection.” Sindy was getting quite excited.

The photographer she’d picked was none other than the notorious ‘Jimmy the Snap’, best known for his range of dodgy continental magazine contributions. After he was deported from most European countries he’d kept his head down in this small town until the heat cooled off.

 

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Unbeknown to innocent Sindy, she’d picked a very wrong ‘un indeed. Aided by his partner and some time wife Kelsie, the back street business was thriving and now becoming known for exporting a range of underground adult films. Also photographing parties, events, weddings and basically anything to make a quick buck.

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Sindy arrived at the address a bit earlier than arranged, she was slightly shocked to walk into a whole stage set of an interesting looking costume drama.

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Met at the door by the slightly annoyed Kelsie, she was motioned to be quiet and keep out of the way. Sindy watched with interest as the actors performed.

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The small room had been transformed into a Tudor interior by a painted backdrop and red bedcover, it was ingenious in its simplicity thought Sindy, who watched awestruck, she loved romantic films.

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“CUT.” Barked Jimmy, a rough looking short man wearing a stained vest and old ripped jeans.

“TAKE 5.” The actors relaxed and discussed the next scene in whispers, glancing over to Sindy sitting quietly in the corner.

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Kelsie ambled heavily across the studio, sat down, lit up a cigarette and started to write out a form.

“I’ll book you in for a photo shoot …this afternoon at four …puff puff…glamour, have you got your own costumes?

“Yes, I have some new dresses.”  Sindy replied.

“Leather Boots, heels, PVC?” Kelsie asked.

“Just cotton I think and these shoes.” Sindy was a bit confused by the questions.

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Jimmy the Snap came over as soon he could, smelling new blood, he liked them young and fresh.

Kelsie whispered something to which he growled, his eyes bored into Sindy, who was convinced he was figuring out her best side photographically and smiled back shyly.

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A small commotion with the actors, one sounded a bit foreign, maybe Italian but Sindy couldn’t make it out. He was speaking very fast and getting louder while wildy gesticulation…yes Italian for sure.

Kelsie tried to calm the handsome young man down as Jimmy swaggered over to Sindy.

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“You’d better go now but I’ll do you properly later girl.” he winked at her in a slightly salacious way as she was quickly ushered out of the studio, to find herself all alone in the alley by the back fire escape.

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The shooting commenced in earnest, they had to finish the film by 3’oclock so it could be edited ready for distribution.

Jimmy didn’t pay the actors very well, they were promised a share in profits so a fast turn around was wanted by all concerned.

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The plot became steamy very fast….as expected for this type of film.

And there wasn’t a lot of lines to learn either.

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Finally the film was completed and the actors changed.

“Do my zip up, darling.” the beautiful starlet whispered to Jimmy, who complied expertly.

Kelsie had a rest and another chocolate bar, she liked eating sweets although they did seem to make her a bit chunky.

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“Can’t you get away for a while Jimmy, I’m all lonely tonight?” purred the starlet quietly just out of Kelsie’s earshot.

“I’ll ring ya, Merl.” he slapped her bottom in a overly familiar manner.

“Thats a promise, big boy….I want to be your favourite actress.” She was very upfront, surprisingly so!

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Just then Sindy arrived early, yet again, she was eagerly excited while clutching her new best dress and some make up ready for her Photo shoot.

“You’re early.” Kelsie stated abruptly, ” I said 4. Are you alone? Does anyone know you’re here?.”

“Oh, I’m sorry…shall I come back again in…er …15 minutes?” Sindy stammered, slightly embarrassed.

“Na, get yer kit off girl.” huffed Jimmy in a gruff voice.

Kelsie slapped at his arm while casting him a stern look and grabbed hold of Sindy pulling her towards the screen, “Take no notice of ‘im, silly fool, now is this what you’re wearing….mmmm not really glamour is it, sweetie?

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“Hang on, I have something much better… here.” Kelsie rummaged in a cupboard (that also doubled as a dark room) filled with costumes while the photographer Jimmy chuckled and whispered with the starlet.

Sindy was handed a flimsy garment made of black lace.

“Put it on..quickly girl, we haven’t got all day.” Kelsie ordered briskly.

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Sindy appeared from behind the changing screen, wearing the black lace and satin negligee, she felt slightly awkward in underwear in front of these two near strangers.

“Take the slip off” Kelsie ordered.

“Pull it down a bit.” Jimmy started to tug at the flimsy strap.

“But…” Sindy was now feeling VERY uncomfortable and really wanted to go home.

This wasn’t how she had envisaged it, she’d expected to be pampered and adored but this just felt cheap and nasty.

Poor Sindy.

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“Come on girl, don’t act shy, you know why you’re here.” Jimmy seemed to loom over her and Sindy actually felt quite scared.

Just them her boyfriend, lovely, dependable Barry burst through the door.

Like a Knight in shining armour…ready to save the innocent damsel from the clutches of the evil Baron.

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Sindy’s mum had told Barry where she was, Barry had sussed the truth about Jimmy the snap as soon as he’d heard the company name. He’d remembered it from a few films he’d seen recently.

The ‘Very Artistic Modeling Company’ also produces a wide range of magazines, calendars as well as men’s films, in fact they were quite well know for ‘introducing young actresses’.

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Barry was fuming in anger, his military and Judo black belt training came before his rational diplomatic speech. He knew exactly the type of Photo session Sindy would be pressured to do and he was furious beyond words.

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Jimmy the Snap was also angry to be interrupted, just when he had a fresh new model ready and almost willing. This was a war of wills and tensions where hightened to excruciating levels.

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BONK

Jimmy was out for the count with Kelsie squealing over his recumbent heavy form, lying flat on the studio floor.

Barry gathered Sindy who was still shaking, in his strong arms,

“Get your stuff Sindy, we’re out of here.”

She fumbled around grabbing her dresses, while faithful Kelsie screeched over Jimmy, trying to bring him round.

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Just before they made their final exit Barry whispered,

“Keep that one on.”

Sindy fluttered her nearly innocent eyelashes and giggled,

“Oh Barry, you are a one!”

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©Juliette Dodd 2018

Burt’s Holiday – MALAYSIA

 

Flying Singapore Airlines, Burt escaped the hustle and bustle of hectic Hong Kong, after another couple of hours drive he arrived on the restful shores of the beautiful Malaysian coast.

Back to the comfortable arms of the laid back culture he’d loved ever since his first visit all those years ago as a young Merchant sailor.

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Burt wandered along the coast road in search of adventure, admiring the precarious looking houses on stilts that kept the occupants dry as well as being an ingenious indoor plumbing system.

He spied a lone figure on the beach busily sorting a basket of freshly caught fish.

“Excuse me, Miss.”

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“Hello Meester,” she replied in broken English.

“Can you tell me where the nearest bar is…beer?’ He mimed having a drink.

She pointed across the bay to the houses on stilts, Burt wandered off in search of a cold beer and some company.

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Busily gutting the still flapping fish, Malay Barbie was interrupted again, this time by a tall foppish American.

“Gee, where can I hire a boat?” He pointed to the rafts pulled up on the shoreline.

Malay Barbie nodded towards a group of men mending nets under the palm trees. Watching the tall stranger in the tight safari one piece mince across the beach reminded her of a bag of melons.

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“Hi Ken, what are you up to now?” asked Casey as she breezed across the golden sands

“I’m getting a boat and catching me some tropical fish, you wanna come Case?”

“No, I’m off for a quiet walk in the forest, I heard there were Tigers and I’ve always wanted to see a tiger in the wild.”

Ken laughed, “Don’t get eaten, ha ha.”

Casey just rolled her eyes and forced a smile at his unfunny remark. Ken had turned into a very arduous travelling companion, with his non-stop preening and down right selfish behaviour ( and he’d been wearing her best sun glasses ever since they flew out from Dallas three weeks ago).

Casey was glad to get away from his constant whining about the heat, the flies and the food, as well as boasting he’d done everything before. Ken was the spoilt son of her boss but she couldn’t refuse this all expenses paid trip just to keep him company and out of trouble.

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Burt wandered back after he found the local ‘Bar’ was shut until the evening, wanting something to do he asked Malay Barbie for suggestions.

“That American, he boat in the sea,” she pointed to Ken passing by with a dingy heading for the surf, loudly singing an out of tune Beach boys song, “Let’s go surfing now, everybody’s learning how, come on and safari with meeeee.”

“Or see wild animals in forest…Tiger, Tapir, monkey with big nose like Westerner.” she motioned over to the lush trees and endless jungle reaching far into the distance.

This did interest Burt, he fancied a bit of jungle after his long journey, to get grounded and suss out the local area. He always loved the Tarzan stories and fancied himself as Johnny Weissmuller.

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Burt noticed Malay Barbie’s basket was moving,

“What’s that?” he asked in surprise.

“Very fresh Turtle, just caught, make nice dinner.”

Burt quickly haggled a price in the local currency until she agreed

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Then immediately he let the poor sea creature go.

“It’s only a young ‘un, let it have a life.” Burt was happy to see it make its way determinedly back to the sea.

Malay Barbie saw him in a whole new light and was moved by his kind heart.

 

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Marching off into the unfamiliar forest, Burt immediately found a suitable staff. He was now ready for adventure, letting his finely tuned senses and nose guide him.

This was real living!

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He hadn’t gone far before Burt heard a shrill shriek break the silence – was that a monkey or something more sinister?

His survival training skills were never forgotten, now his heroic instinct was fully stimulated as he followed the piercing noise, which definitely sounded like something in distress.

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Poor Casey, she was caught in the vice like grip of the infamous reticulated python.

Not in itself poisonous but equally deadly, for its powerful constricting muscle mass. This one was gigantic, it must have been at least six yards. She had no hope at all. Alone in the depths of the steamy, remote rainforest. All she could do was scream.

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Burt’s keen ears clocked the direction and he went running to the rescue, sinews flexing in anticipation, he was all man.

A man of action

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The scene he encountered in that clearing would stay with him for eternity….

The ever tightening python coiling itself around her limbs in the constricting embrace of death, Casey cried out between sobs of sheer terror.

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The situation was dire as she thrashed with all her might to no avail, the pure muscle force of her adversary slowly wrapping itself around her struggling form, as it gradually squeezed her slender body tighter and tighter.

Burt used his staff to get the reptiles attention, fiercely jabbing at its head.

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The snake stopped squeezing momentarily as Casey tried to wriggle free, tears running down her cheeks.

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Its weighty body was still pinning her to the ground as Burt goaded the hissing and very angry creature, with orange eyes flashing and tongue flicking wildly as his staff poked and prodded.

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Quick as a flash Burt grabbed the pythons neck and wrestled it off Casey, while she quickly untangled her long legs from the rest of its coiling body.

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After his recent island adventures Burt never travelled anywhere without a special bit of kit.

His lucky fork.

Before the thwarted python could wrap its thrashing coils round Burt the final deed was done, as quick as a flash the fork pierced the pythons throat.

Casey watched admiringly as the heroic stranger swiftly dispatched the deadly snake.

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As its enormous carcass twitched in the final death spasms, Burt helped Casey up and gathered her scattered belongings.

“Wow, you saved my life, how can I thank you? I thought I was a goner for sure.” she was shaking with relief as Burt gently comforted the distressed damsel.

“Look at the size of it! I didn’t think snakes grew that big, that’d make a maxi coat and matching boots I’m sure!” Casey liked boots and was also rather fond of snakeskin, it was very fashionable this season back in America.

“We’ll send someone back to fetch it but let’s get you to safety and a doctor to check you over.” Burt was concerned she might go into delayed shock.

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“No no, I’m fine, just a bit bruised on my legs, gee I could do with a stiff drink.”

Burt retrieved his trusty fork and wiped it clean.

“That’s an odd weapon, if you don’t mind me saying, I’ve never seen a fork used like that!”

“It’s my lucky fork.” Burt replied with a cheeky wink.

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Linking arms the new friends strolled back through the rainforest chatting about their recent journeys and how they’d both ended up in this small remote Malaysian coastal town.

“So you’ve been everywhere Burt?”

“Not everywhere, not yet anyway, I’m off to India next.”

“Wow, I’ve always fancied India and the Himalayas, so exotic,” Casey sighed, “But we have to go back to the US soon.”

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Once back to the seaside village it was beginning to get dark, and storm clouds out at sea were darkly brewing.

A tall figure ambled over to them.

“Ken, this in Burt, he’s just saved me from a giant snake in the jungle.”

Ken laughed, thinking she was joking.

“Now we’re going to celebrate, I’m dying for a drink.” she pulled Burt’s arm in the direction of the now busy beach bar.

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“But I thought we were going up the coast to the big hotel?” Ken whined in his annoying high tone, while feigning a smile at the strange bearded man Casey had picked up.

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“Well I’ll just have to go on my own then, you know I can’t bare roughing it with the locals.” Ken turned ready to flounce off but waited to see if Casey would change her mind.

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“Ok Ken, but you know what your father said, you mustn’t go off on your own after dark, especially after what happened in Cuba last year.”

Ken looked visibly shocked at her words then he smiled and giggled as if recalling an amusing incident. ” That was different, they were just playing.”

Burt had no idea what they were talking about and quite frankly, he didn’t want to know.

Although, he did want to get to know Casey better. His holiday suddenly looked a lot more fun than he’d expected. He liked American girls, they were always happy.

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Malay Barbie had sold all her fish and was packing up for the day while watching the commotion amongst the Westerners. They seemed to love a bit of drama and certainly provided new entertainment on the beach.

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The Yellow haired couple walked off towards the village huts, leaving the tall one with the tight trousers standing all alone. Malay Barbie saw her chance for a little bit of romance with a stranger.

I don’t think she stood much luck personally.

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©Juliette Dodd 2018