TRAVEL: YOUR HOLIDAY DISASTER

Loving `Guys and Dolls' is one thing, but when Bob Maddams was tricked by a living doll, the music stopped

ver since I first saw Guys and Dolls I have wanted to visit Times Square and follow in the footsteps of Nathan Detroit, Sky Masterson, Little Isidore and all the other characters who, through their wit and guile, scammed their way through life in the roaring Twenties.

It is four o'clock in the morning and I am leaving a cosy little speak on Broadway and ruminating on this very subject when a cab draws up and deposits a very elegant looking doll. She takes one look at me and says: "Would you like some company, honey?". Now this is most unusual, as good- looking dolls rarely approach me in this way. Before I can answer, she says: "What hotel you stayin' in?".

I explain to the doll that, contrary to her expectations, I am in fact residing with friends in their apartment on Central Park West. I am also thinking that this will make me a non-runner in her eyes, it being generally regarded by members of her obvious profession that Johns do not usually return to their hosts in such company, thus allowing me to ditch the doll in a courteous and polite manner, my having been brought up to always be courteous and polite when dealing with dolls.

"That's goin' my way," she says, "can I tag along?" As we walk, there is more chitchat along the lines that most dolls are good at making, and by the time we have walked half a block, she knows almost everything about me and why I'm over here.

"Look," she says, "why don't you give me a call next time you're in New York?"

"Good idea," I say, because it is, since it gives me a neat exit. So she stops, takes my arm and we step into a doorway. She digs around in her handbag and produces a notebook and pencil. But instead of writing down her John Doe, she hands them to me. So I ask her for her name.

"Euphenia," she replies.

Now Euphenia is a pretty uncommon name for a doll in anyone's language, and not really expecting her to part with her real monicker anyway, I play right along and ask her to spell the name out for me, which she successfully does.

After that she gives me her telephone number. And after that she gives me the clincher. And I use the word literally because, uninvited, she takes hold of me in a place that last time I was grabbed there, I was 12 years old and the doctor was asking me to cough.

She also offers to perform an oral act that a certain political intern of late has gone on record as giving the Leader of the Free World. Suffice to say I decline and escape into the night to find myself a cab.

Minutes later, my cab drops me outside my friends' apartment. I get out and reach into my front trouser pocket to pay and, guess what, no spondoolicks. In fact, no scratch left whatsoever.

The lovely Euphenia has lifted over two hundred dollars. And she has done it with no blackjack-wielding accomplice, no mace spray, just a lot of skill, subtlety and a certain amount of dexterity. In short, a highly skilled job by a very clever, scheming doll.

My cab driver was none too amused, but I think Nathan and the rest of the guys would have been justly proud.

Share your holiday nightmares by sending a 600-word account to: Holiday Disasters, Independent on Sunday, 1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London, E14 5DL. E-mail: sundaytravel@independent.co.uk

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Recruitment Genius: Bid / Tender Writing Executive

    £24000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: With offices in Manchester, Lon...

    Guru Careers: Marketing Executives / Marketing Communications Consultants

    Competitive (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a number of Marketi...

    Recruitment Genius: Marketing Executive

    £20000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This well established business ...

    Ashdown Group: Management Accountant - Manchester

    £25000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Management Accountant - Manchester...

    Day In a Page

    Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

    The secret CIA Starbucks

    The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
    Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

    How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

    The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
    One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

    One million Britons using food banks

    Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

    The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
    Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
    Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

    Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

    They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
    Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
    The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

    The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

    Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
    How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

    How to run a restaurant

    As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
    Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

    Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

    For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
    Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

    Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

    The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
    10 best tote bags

    Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

    We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
    Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

    Paul Scholes column

    I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...