In fact I had no choice in the matter. October 1st is always the night on which we hold the Snug Bar All Comers Conkers Championships. I dusted down my trusty eighty ouncer and headed once more for my inevitable victory.
On arrival I had expected to be greeted with the bustle and fervour normally associated with great sporting occasions. Usually Pedro sits in the corner doing his Desmond Lynham impersonation as he tries to capture the tension of the big match build up. The other regulars form a crowd swaying and singing traditional conkers songs.
But last Wednesday it was very different. Everyone stared gloomily at their drinks. The best I got was a grudging nod of recognition from Grumpy Spice.
"Anyone, for conkers?" I asked cheerily.
"Anyone for a drink?"
"Anyone still breathing?"
"What is the matter?" I asked.
"We've got a buyer," explained Archie without looking up.
"That is great news Arch. But won't the council be a bit annoyed when they find out?" I enquired.
He did not respond. Instead he shoved in my direction some well thumbed and rather grubby particulars for what sounded like a thoroughly intriguing property. A rare opportunity to purchase a well established property of character and charm close to the park, it read.
In summer the airy lounge opens on to a sunny terrace. In winter the focus is provided by a traditional stone fireplace. For those seeking more privacy a cosy snug provides the perfect complement to the bustling lounge. A large kitchen to the rear offers excellent opportunities. Upstairs there are three bedrooms and the self-contained private quarters which would be expected from a discerning landlord.
"It sounds very nice," I said. "I'm not sure I fancy the landlord living in though."
"Look at the pictures," Archie insisted.
"You know what," I said examining the snaps on the particulars. "I feel as if I know this place. It looks so familiar. It almost reminds me of the Fount."
"It is the Fount you dingbat," Archie snapped. "Herself is selling up." I was stunned. The Fount for sale. Impossible.
"All this snug bar chat about the property market has set Herself thinking," Archie explained. "She reckons the market is peaking and now is the time to cash in. We're doomed. We're doomed."
"It isn't over until the Fat Lady sings," I insisted.
At that point a Lardogram lady burst through the door. She was enormous. In her hands she carried the words to "Don't Cry For Me Argentina." She gathered herself, took a deep breath and . . ."Reuse content