A Unlikely Visitor for Supper

Last night Sir Jack came for supper.

I hadn’t expected a visitor, Hat only alerted me to possibility of a guest whilst she was wallowing in her bath:

 Can one of my friends come round, Mum?

Sure. Where are you going? (Hat, of course, disappeared when both Madame Marcia and Marcella made their appearances)

My friend is the captain of a ship, I’m going to have supper with his crew.

Oh. Right.

Later, making scrambled egg (which is what constitutes dinner in the home of failed Domestic Goddesses), guest shambled into the kitchen.

He was wearing a large hat which obscured his face and walked with an obvious limp. Whilst on one foot he wore a boot (which looked remarkably like one I own), the other leg appeared to be missing both foot and boot.

Hello, said visitor gruffly in a really dodgy Cockney accent (not dissimilar to the one Hat had been practising for a couple of days enquiring whether she sounded ”English”), ”I’m Sir Jack”.

Oh hello, I said, trying not to giggle as I proffered a hand to shake. A hook (which I swear was the curled end of a metal coat hanger) shot out in response.

Good grief, I said, what on earth happened to your hand Sir Jack? … And your foot come to think of it. In fact, where is your foot?

Not wishing to be forward but unable to help myself, I tugged up the leg of my guest’s voluminous trousers (not something I would do ordinarily, really). I thought I caught a movement, a foot hastily retreating up inside the leg of his pants, but perhaps I’m just being uncharitable. For all I saw was a stick. A peg leg.

”Bloody sea lion”, said Sir Jack, ”ripped off my hand and my foot”.

Heavens I said, why did it do that?

“It was sitting on the X”.


”Yes, yes”’, he said impatiently, ”on the X Marks The Spot on my treasure map, had to move it off so I could get to my gold, innit?”.

Oh dear I say with as much concern as I can muster (despite swallowing laughter).

”It’s not funny, you know, bloody thing’

Your language, I remonstrate, is shocking.  I never swear, I say (madly crossing fingers)

No, he replies as quick as a flash, you just speak French instead.

Did my daughter tell you that?

She might ‘ave.

He stalked about my kitchen as I bunged bread into the toaster and opened a can of Baked Beans, his peg clipping against the floor.

And then I swore I heard him pass wind.

”You filthy bugger!” I said, feigning outrage.

“I seen a lot more filthy things in my time than you áve young lady”, he retorted without a trace of shame.

Having introduced Sir Jack to husband we all sit down to eat our eggs on toast.

I am aghast at my guest’s manners. They are beyond shocking. He eats with his mouth open and scoops food up with the fingers of his one working hand.

Would you like a drink, Sir Jack? I enquire

 Gin. He says.

We’re out, says my husband shortly.

I watch his slovenly manners for a bit longer and then can’t resist commenting, ”your table manners are shocking Sir Jack, do you get many invitations to dinner?”

”You try eating with a hook”, he says.

I keep quiet after that.

Dinner over and Sir Jack gets up and lumbers off. As an afterthought he tosses a 2p coin onto the table, ”keep the change”, he instructs gruffly.

Ooooh thanks, I’ll try not to spend it all at once.

Seconds later Hat skips out to join me in the kitchen where I am clearing up.

”How was supper with the crew?” I ask.

Disgusting, she says, and they ate like pigs, no manners at all.

Funny that, I say, Sir Jack’s were lacking too.


My daughter’s forays into the world of Make Believe are a new thing. They have made their debut in our lives since we made ours in the Outpost. I cannot decide whether they are born of a desire to be entertained, to entertain us or because, like me, the isolation is driving her ever so slightly potty. But it doesn’t matter. For they are always a happy distraction and every visitor she introduces us to is a wonderfully, colourful character whose brief presence is hugley welcome in a place largely devoid of company.


9 Responses to “A Unlikely Visitor for Supper”

  1. Potty Mummy Says:

    I think Hat has a shining future as star of stage and screen ahead of her. Very very funny.

  2. foxhollowjewelry Says:

    I have spent the last 2 hours reading your wonderful blog…you are so funny and very talented…it is not often that I find a blog that I want to read every single post in one sitting.
    Good luck to you regarding your writing..your tenacity will pay off…
    Your daughter will remember this time with you forever…you are so right about savoring the time right now…

  3. reluctantmemsahib Says:

    Potty Mummy: Hat was thrilled with the fan mail. Until the stage beckons, I hope I can keep her firmly tied to the outpost …

  4. reluctantmemsahib Says:

    foxhollowjewelry: thank so much for taking the time to read. And for being so very kind. I shall certainly remember this time with Hat: not least for the endless stream of visitors that she introduces me to!

  5. Mzungu Chick Says:

    I love Hat’s colourful characters. They are all excellent. She has a brilliant imagination and i’m sure you’re very proud of her and all the ‘extra’ company she provides!

  6. Iota Says:

    2p? 2p? Was that a tip for the service, is did Sir Jack think he was in a cheap restaurant? Or was it just one of his piratical eccentricities?

    I wonder how he got his knighthood? “For services to piracy” doesn’t sound very likely?

  7. reluctantmemsahib Says:

    Mzungu Chick. I am. Providing she doesn’t start saying to people when asked what she wants to be when grown up: “not mad, like my mum, who believes in pirates with one legs and hooks for hands”.

    Iota: I think she, sorry Sir Jack, mightn’t have moved with the times: perhaps 2p was a lot back then? perhaps Hat still thinks it is. Perhaps it’s a small hint that she’d like a raise? How did he get his knighthood? Nor to services to the theory that manners maketh the man either judging by the way he scooped scrambled egg into his mouth.

  8. Paula Says:

    Oh my word how funny. I can relate to the slightly mad idea, living as we do in the middle of nowhere as well. The more I think about it the more I think its a great idea to liven things up.

  9. Breaking Silences « Reluctant Memsahib Says:

    […] But I shall miss Madame Marcia the fortune teller, and Marcella her lookalike sister, and despite his shocking manners, I might even miss Captain Jack. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: