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Monday, 12 November 2012

day sixty-one and egrets

“We’ve forgotten the dinghy!” said the steward. “With Lieutenant Temples and Superviser Singsong in it!”
“Ah,” said the captain. “Yes. Mmm. Ah. Exactly. I thought something was different,” he said, looking at the empty co-pilot’s seat next to his in the cockpit. “No need to panic.”
An egret flew past the front of the cockpit. Capt. Cookie opened the window and called out “Excuse me!”
The egret came and perched on the window frame.
“How-do!” said the egret.
“Good morning!” said the captain. “Have you by any chance seen a dinghy!”
“What does it look like?” asked the egret.
“It’s orange. There are two of my crew on board,” said Cookie.
“And what do they look like?” asked the egret.
“Well, one’s wearing a cap and an airline blazer with two gold stripes around the cuffs, and the other one’s wearing a kind of bonnet and a silk scarf, the regulation airline uniform.”
Another egret came and perched on the window frame with a frog in it’s mouth.
“Gulp!” said the second egret, swallowing the frog. “What’s happening?”
“This chap’s lost his dinghy,” said the first egret. “It’s red.”
“More orange, really,” said the captain. “Have you seen it?”
“Got any grub?” said the second egret. “Anything to eat?”
Another egret came.
“Grub? Who’s got some grub?” asked the third egret.
“This bloke’s lost an orange,” said egret two.
“No, a dinghy! An orange dinghy,” said the captain.
“The grub’s in the dinghy, is it?” said egret three.
“There’s no grub in the dinghy!” said the captain. “Just two of my crew! Have you seen them?”
“No grub?” said egret three. “This is a waste of time, lads!” said the third egret.
Another egret came.
“What’s going on?” it said. 
“This man hasn’t got any grub after all!” said egret three.
“Shocking!” said the fourth egret.
“Have you seen an orange dinghy?” asked Captain Cookie, exasperatedly.
“No, mate,” said egret four. ”We’re generally looking for grub,” said egret four. “A bird’s got to eat, you know!”
“Can you go and look for it for me? It’s somewhere on this lake,” said the captain.
The four egrets looked at the captain and then looked at each other.
“It’s a big lake,” said egret one.
“If you find the dinghy, I promise I’ll give you some grub!” said the captain.
“What kind of grub?” said egret two. “You said you didn’t have any!”
“Yeah, not frogs!” said egret two. “I’ve had my fill of frogs, I have!”
“How about anchovies?” said the captain.
“Anchovies!?” shouted all the egrets together.
“Yes, if you find my dinghy, I’ll give you an anchovy fillet each!”
“Right! said egret four. “What does this dinghy look like?”
“It’s orange” said egret two.
“It’s got two geezers in it, wearing funny clothes,” said egret one.
“Give us five minutes!” said egret three.
“Get the anchovies ready!” said egret four.
And the egrets flew off.

© David Severn 2012

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