Friday 12 October 2012

'The Privacy of Caravans' by Andrew Green

We were sat back on the long seats of the caravan. It was still cool enough in the evenings to need the gas fire on.
‘I really don’t like him you know’.  Her voice was indignant, about Dick and there was some reproach for me in there too.
We had got back from the bar and waved goodnight to the others. This was our first chance to talk about what had gone on. I had guessed that Lynne would not be all that keen on Dick or his mate. The asbestos stripper from Skem. They were the old hands, the ones who knew the ropes. They had been friendly, helpful in our first couple of weeks in France. That said I knew what Lynne meant  about Dick with his lank mullet, sleazy jokes.
It was the dog thing that I think sealed it for her. Not just his cruelty, but the way he did it. He tempted and teased the dog, then sharply smacked it's nose so it squealed. He did this infront of all of us, made us his accomplices. 
She was angry now, half with him but half with me. She thought I ought of have said or done something but I hd not. I was annoyed too. I had known I was being weak yes,  but she refused not to understand why.
In the privacy of the caravan, I raised my voice to make my point.
‘I think Dick is a complete prat, an absolute creep. What he did to the dog was shit. But we need the bastard right now. He is the one with the van, without that we are stuck here.’
 The next morning I learnt all I needed to know about the privacy of caravans, when Dick looked straight through me.

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