the pound note
There was a bench opposite the corner shop that we all used to sit on, it was at the bottom of the street, I only lived 6 houses up from the start of the street so it was good for me, I could look out the window to see if anybody was there before I decided to go out, or if there was somebody I didn’t like on the bench I wouldn’t go out.
I was 12 years old, and sitting on the bench, nobody was out, I was waiting for one of the boys or any of the girls to come out, sooner or later somebody would turn up.
I could see Mrs Williams from number 22 walking down the street, I watched her walking towards the shop, but just as she was about to go in she stopped and looked down at the floor by the drain, she bent down and picked something up. From where I was sitting I could see what it was she picked up. It was a pound note.
She walked into the shop waving it about and I could see her talking to the women behind the counter pointing at the drain, and giving them the pound note.
I was gutted that I didn’t spot it before Mrs Williams did, I wouldn’t have handed it in. I would have spent it on sweets and said nothing.
I watched as Mrs Williams left the shop and then I had an idea.
I walked over to the drain where she found the money, and I started looking around as if I had lost something, but I needed to get the attention of the women working behind the counter. So I started crying as I was looking around the floor. One of the women came out and asked me what was wrong.
“I have lost my money, my mother is guna kill me”
“It’s ok love, don’t worry, how much have you lost”
“ A pound”
“Come inside, somebody has just handed some money in”
And she handed me the pound note, I said thank you, wiped my tears away, and then waited a reasonable amount of time before I could leave without it looking suspicious.
I left and spent the money in a shop up the road
I often see the woman that was working behind the counter around the village, as you do when you live in the valleys, and she always recalls the story of the time I was crying outside the shop looking for my money. And I never had the heart to tell her the truth.