Water, Water Everywhere

we called her Mrs Apricot
whether or not that was her real name
as children we equated her with fat tins of jam
Henry Jones IXL from far way Australia
she was to be our landlady on a weeks’ holiday
at Hayling Island, we waited with great curiosity
as she opened the door to her seaside home
to be overwhelmed by a jovial greeting from
a voluptuous lady wearing an orange cardigan
it was all smiles from the family as she showed us the bedrooms
talking incessantly of blankets and the like
and when breakfast would be served

but it was the journey in the back seat
of my Dad’s old Morris that still held my attention
forty miles is a long way for a seven year old
eventually the road crossed over low-tide mud
and then round the Butlins Holiday Camp corner
the sea air coming strong and welcome
when something quite frightening happened
the car had turned down a side road
and all I could see was water, water everywhere
the road heading straight into water with no escape
Mum said ‘you’ll have to turn round’ -
but I still wondered, where did that road go?

© Richard Scutter 11 June 2008

Image to be inserted ...
Hayling Island, The Parade looking west, 1950s


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