The telephone rings. It’s the Wee Manny. He is in his cups.
Hello. How are you? Is Bertie about?
No. He’s over at Clint’s. I thought he’d be back by now. How are you doing?
I’m fine. But I’m thinking of taking a lot of time off over Christmas and going over to see this property in SA and I wondered if Bert would like to come to give me a second opinion for you know how I value his opinion.
Christmas in South Africa? I’ll have to run that past him. You know he’s thinking of going to Indonesia early next year.
Yeah. To rescue orang utans.
Yeah. Anyways how’s Khail doing?
That poof? He’s doing OK. He’ll be doing OK if he doesn’t roll another car.
How is his graft taking?
It’s doing good. But the area they took the graft from is a disaster. They were hours picking bits of fluff out of it with tweezers. Somebody put the wrong dressing on it. He’s taking photos of it. He’s taking photos of everything. His wounds, the wrecked car. He’s not right in the head.
Oh I don’t know. Some people just like that sort of stuff. You think it’s a bit sick?
Sixth? Aye. Michael McGlone I went to school with was a sixth son of a sixth son. He knew everything the day before it happened.
Oh. Does Khail know everything the day before it happens?
Hardly. He’s not a sixth son.
Isn’t it a seventh son?
I don’t know! Are you eating?
Yes. I’m eating a tomato.
You shouldn’t! Tomatoes are terrible things. Where did you get it?
Off a bush. I’m eating another one. Yum.
You grew it yourself. That’s OK now. But you shouldn’t eat shop bought tomatoes. I saw it on the TV. There are some great programmes on in the morning. You should watch them.
Oh I couldn’t be bothered with them. What’s wrong with shop bought tomatoes? Are they rank poison?
No they’re full of…
No! Water! They’re full of water.
Look I’m going to have to go now. I’ve got things to do.
Then I’ll not tell you where you get the best tomatoes.
Oh go on then.
The Isle of Wight. They grow them hydroponically there. Now what about this trip to Africa?
I’ll run it past him. But if it’s over Christmas I shan’t allow him. After all it’s going to be our first Christmas in the new house.
Then there’s the orang utans…
Put down phone. Go to den where dearest is watching a film. Say to him.
You owe me. Big style.