They don’t even talk about death in the charity shops

Over my ‘pot’ of coffee, I realise that the shaking elderly man opposite may not be suffering from Parkinsons after all. He has just had a ‘pot’ of one pound coffee from Cafe M. All those genially chatting elderly ladies? They’re not chatting, they’re manically gibbering, froffing cheap coffee from every orifice.

I am a firm believer in quantity over quality but the third mug defeats me, the silver stainless silver pot still impossibly full. Silver haired quivering old dears applaud every bit of my child’s bad behaviour insisting he is ‘just lovely, just lovely’, rubbing his head with wired shaking claws as I chase him out of the cafe into the grim drizzle of a Cleveleys spring.

It is rare for me to feel young but with both hips still mine, mine mine and pure caffeine roaring through my veins I roar up the high street, dodging more signs, more signs for 80p coffee, coffee ‘happy hour’, in and out the charity shops, my child bending his head in a desperate effort to thwart the zombied fingers heading towards him with the shaky chorus of ‘those curls, those curls..’

Cleveleys is a few miles away from Blackpool where even at this early time, a drunk man from Kidderminster will be aggressively trying to chat up a traffic warden under the red eyes of his howling sleepless friends.

Here, people have risen early to put on ties or a nice warm coat, purchase the Daily Mail and have jolly banter outside the butchers, the bakers, the cheese shop or the greengrocers.


They don’t even talk about death in the charity shops.




I am suspicious and scared and leave quickly, wondering at this strange new tribe who have found eternal life by the North Sea.

I shall drink more coffee in future.

3 Responses to “They don’t even talk about death in the charity shops”

  • narf7 Says:

    No death…no pack drill… What are you doing so far South in Blackpool? Hopefully those 1 pound pots weren’t the lure. I also hope that those racks of clothes aren’t representative of your op shops. They seem as generic and in denial as the death free thrift shops. Zombie claws…age shall not weary them (not in the least when they are fortified with 80p pots of tea!), but it SHALL wither them. Enjoy those curls while they last.

  • cyberfairy Says:

    I was visiting an elderly sort of relative. Managed to get a nice yellow tea dress dress until I realised I looked like a fat kate windsor in it. A weird place though- both working class but fiercely conservative. Elderly men with old faded tattoos but smart suits. A terrifying lack of pubs and no-one in Cleveleys smokes. Hmm, some sort of correlation there…

  • Cleveleys News Says:

    A very accurate portrayal. Thank you.

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