26 November 2014

A Summers Fete (fate) or How not to Capture a Kidnapper

Case 1:The Case of the Missing Turnips - The Conclusion (sort of) 

Late June

It was the day of the annual summer fete, Leyhill's biggest annual event, the day I was going to finally ensnare the kidnapper. Before setting up my stall I had to complete a number of forms allowing me the privilege to be part of the event. Why? No idea to be honest, clearly bureaucracy in Leyhill was strictly controlled by Mr Kiln and Co, who seemed to pocket most of the received fees. I had to pay Mr Kiln a fiver for the pleasure. which he duly pocketed in his expensive jacket. The plan was to set up a stall that would catch the kidnapper red handed, it went something like this..

The game was an impersonation game called "Can you be a kidnapper?" I would ask them to take on the role of a person trying to steal some pigs or goats or even turnips. And I might throw in role plays of the stabbing of Mrs Johnson or the kidnapping of Mrs Wilcox, if I felt the need. The one who was the most convincing would surely be the one who had done all these crimes and I would have solved the case. I was rather proud of my idea and just a little excited with the anticipation of putting my plan into place, hence the nervous farting again! 

Later that day

The fete was opened by old Mr Perth, a parish councillor, who seemed to be completely unaware of what was going on and kept complaining about the noise. Apparently the local celebrity Paine Delight (real name Stan Partridge) a singer was on a tour of Bedfordshire, so wasn't available. The whole village had turned out and I knew so had the kidnapper. I had set up my stall and waited. And waited some more. I waited a bit longer and a bit more after that for at least one person to try, alas nobody. The fete was going extremely well; for everyone else and I was just about to give up when someone came to the stall. They seemed a little suspicious in their attitude, always looking around to check that nobody was watching. Was this the moment? I told them the instructions, which seemed to puzzle them a little but they were willing to give it a go and were all too convincing in their interpretation. So the moment had come;

"You are under arrest for being all too convincing as a kidnapper" I stated.
"Are you barking mad?" Came the reply. "I'm PC Bob Pig you fool, out of uniform. See." He took his cap off to reveal his rather portly face. "How dare you even insinuate that I would be a kidnapper. You're nicked." He paused momentarily and then rattled through his list. "One, making ME, a police officer impersonate a kidnapper. Two for setting up an illegal stall, I've seen your papers and I can hardly read the writing." I had to admit I did rush them a little. "Three for not making any money on the stall and four we've already solved the case and the councillors were found not guilty as Mrs Wilcox returned this morning. Apparently she had gone away on business."
"When did that happen?"
"Must have missed that, was trying to catch the real kidnapper up at Tyler's Hill. So really you haven't solved the case of Mr Johnsons animals at all. So whoever they are is still at large!" 
"Well yeah, but at least it wasn't the councillors. They paid me a handsome fine, which I've um pocketed for now and will eventually put in next years Fete fund. Anyway come with me, Oh thought of another reason, so that's five things now."
"Why five?"
"For making me waste my time and the 50p I've paid. Which I shall reclaim for the stress of the situation."
"Oh" came my reply. "Look I'm trying to catch the kidnapper. They left me a note saying they would be here. I'm so close to solving it".
"That's six reasons now."
"What, for not solving the case?"
"No for making me miss the fetes raffle. I could have won the new petrol lawnmower they were giving away. Could have done with that."

And so I was dragged away cuffed like a criminal. I was sure I saw Mrs Wilcox hiding in the shadows laughing at me but I couldn't be certain. And my dreams of catching the kidnapper in tatters. That evening in the village hall I was put on trial.  PC Bob Pig, Mr Kiln and Pickles and old Mr Perth; who was still complaining about the noise, were in attendance as was the local hack for the LeyHill Echo, Mum and Jock the Block (both crying), Clare Flynn and her dad (both laughing) and a mysterious person who looked like an old lady who was wearing a balaclava (clapping). I was charged with wasting everyone's evening and for the six charges as laid out by PC Bob Pig! My sentence was to work on Mr Johnsons farm as his muck spreader and do all the other farm jobs his now deceased wife used to do. I tried to protest my innocence, keeping quiet about the disappearance of Mrs Johnson (which to this day remains unsolved, thankfully). However it was to no avail and so the case was closed on my time as a detective and the case of the missing farm animals and the turnips. 

I was to start work the following morning and after that they all left to go to the pub for a pint. I sat thinking about the events of the day and the case overall. Ok so I had failed to find and trap the kidnapper, even if they were right under my and the rest of Leyhills nose. But I had found the career for me and I was sure that eventually my fortunes would change and I would show them all that I was a good detective. So I made my way home defeated and a little downcast but also knowing that The Case of the Missing Turnips was only the beginning, new adventures awaited that was for sure.

The End?............
Well not quite.......

A few weeks later Mrs Wilcox had opened up a children's farm for visiting city kids in Tylers Hill. Funnily enough the farm had pigs, goats, cows and also a vegetable patch which grew amongst other treats; turnips! However I was keeping my nose to the floor for now (although not too close, especially being a muck spreader!) The kidnapper was still out there and I would be ready to catch them when they made their next move. Although a good wash would be required first. 

Coming soon (A Christmas special - "I Saw 3 Trucks Go Driving By")


15 November 2014

The Journey - a pictorial look at journeys we make.

Its a journey most of us make each and every day. For some its train or maybe even plane? For others its car or tube or bike or a hike (sorry getting a little poetic!). Have you ever taken a moment to actually look at your surroundings as you journey to and from work or school every morning and night? Well as a first in a series of journey posts I thought I'd share my journey. I'm fortunate or unfortunate depending on your opinion to be able to cycle to work. So here it is, from picturesque commons and woods to forgotten icons of years gone by, across the car park known as the M25 and the engineering marvel that is the Grand Union Canal. I feel rather blessed that each day I see these changing landscapes. So please, next week as you leave the house on a dark and misty morning, take a moment to look at your surroundings, you might just notice something you hadn't before!

From commons
to objects of the past

From the chaos of the M25
 to the tranquillity of the trees
and the peaceful nature of the Grand Union Canal

Footnote: I would love to hear about your journeys so please leave a comment, it would be appreciated. 


9 November 2014

Want to kidnap a cow?

Case 1 - The Case of the Missing Turnips
Part 10

20 something of June (with all this detective work I've lost track of the days!)

I had a meeting to attend, so packing my flask I headed up to Tyler's Hill and sat on the bench outside the church. I took out mums homemade cake she had made, took a bite and then put it back in my bag again. Tasted awful. All I needed now was a kidnapper to chat to. 

At 4:15 there was still no sign of them. My nerves were making me fart a bit too often and I just wanted to get this over with. Suddenly I heard footsteps. In the distance I saw someone who looked an awful lot like Mrs Wilcox. As she drew closer I realised it was Mrs Wilcox! 

"I thought you'd been kidnapped" I stated.
"I have" came a rather forthright reply. "I kidnapped myself but I was told to come and meet some-one here at 4pm."
"Really!" I replied slightly confused "So was I". 
"Well maybe we're waiting for the same person then" she said.

And so we sat together waiting for the kidnapper to appear. In the meantime at least one mystery had been solved and Mrs Wilcox was safe and well. We waited for another ten minutes or so and with nothing happening Mrs Wilcox stood up and said she was fed up and going back home. She suggested I may have got the wrong day and should come back tomorrow. I was sure it was today but also thought she may have a point and decided I would return tomorrow. As she walked away I'm sure I heard her mumble something about "just can't get the right kidnappers these days". If that was what she had said then I tended to agree with her. So I went home, rather confused at what had just taken place, but would be back tomorrow for sure.

The Next Morning..

So the next morning (and still farting a little) I headed back to the meeting point, sure that I would make contact and finally trap this wicked villain. However pinned to the bench was a note which upon opening just had the words,
"ha, ha , ha, ha, ha you fool, you are no kidnapper, go back to mummy"

No way was I going back to Mum, especially if her tea was as bad as the cake I tried yesterday. Puzzled I didn't quite know what to do. So I sat down to think about it, eventually falling asleep. I awoke sometime later and when my eyes had readjusted to the light I noticed another note sitting on my lap which said;

"I will be at the village fete tomorrow. Catch me if you can! Signed W"

Who was W? They had always addressed it as Kidnapper. So the final showdown had been set. I would set up my own stall and trap them that way. I would become the hero of the village or would I? 

To be concluded....



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