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  • Ashleigh Ogilvie-Lee

Blog 9 - From a Villa in Grey Lynn - A bad egg.


I was walking down Hakanoa Street with a canopy and a carpet of autumn, that close bosom friend of the maturing sun. Suddenly the beauty of my Keatsian thoughts was interrupted by a lean lad, maybe 11, years old, on a lime scooter, rushing past me faster than Bella after a cat.


The leaves and I scatter in his wake with my muttering like the old pensioner I am, "Slow down there, laddie."


I turn around to scowl at his retreating back, and I see him come to an abrupt halt, plonk one foot down so he can swirl around in a mechanical yogi-like manoeuvre and the next thing I know, he is doing a slow circle around me, like a pagan circling a trussed-up Christian.


I explain to him, "I don’t think you should go so fast on the pavement."


"Well, how fast can I go?" he taunts, eyeballing me with a keen predatorial interest.


"I don’t know exactly," I say, as I am not good at thinking on my feet and, never having been on a lime scooter, I am oblivious of the etiquette.


He does another lap around me like a bored cat wanting to play a mean game.


"So what’s your problem then?"


"My problem," I reasonably suggest, "is that you might knock me over."

"Already done that to someone," he replies defensively as if I were implying I had thought of this first.

"He’s in the hospital," he adds proudly.


I asks this little menace if I might take a photo of him.


"Wa for?" he eyes me up, suspecting instinctively that I have no intention of nominating him for a boy scout award.


I tell him I like to write blogs and might write one on people riding scooters and what the actual rules are. I hold up my phone to take his photo when he suddenly performs his handlebar trick again and he's gone.


I see him further down the road talking to an old American man who has no shirt on, just a pink flaccid torso with white fuzz. They are both eyeing me up. The next thing I know, the boy has gone and the pink American is moving his index finger slowly, like the witch beckoning Gretel into her house while she's busy eating gingerbread. I cross the road and he admonishes me, "What do you think you’re doing to that poor boy?"


I say "that poor boy nearly ran me over."

Mr. do-gooder says, "You’re the adult here. You have all the power. You have no right to try and take a photo without parental permission. You need to talk nicely and reasonably to a child."

Now, there is something about the word "child" that is at odds with the species itself, and as any seasoned parent knows, by the double digits, they are at the peak of their cunning.


But having lost confidence since I was abandoned as a fully-fledged adult, I am not too good at standing up for myself, whether it's with children or half-naked Americans. I am upset with the confrontational turn this day has taken: a nasty kid and an ugly American having quite obliterated the mists and mellow fruitfulness of what began as a promising autumnal day.


Recognising a Mexican standoff when I’m in one, I walk away, imagining the old man wagging his finger at my departing figure.


I get to the bottom of Hakanoa Street where the boy is waiting for me.


"Wa that old geyser say to ya?" he asks. He tells me this defender of the innocent told him bloggers just stir shit and adults have to ask caregivers if they can take a photo.


I decide I will try to talk to him reasonably like the old man suggested. I say, "I am old, and I am afraid of falling over, or worse still being knocked over by a speeding scooter and not being able to get up."


He smiles quite frankly delighted with the image of my lying prostrate among the autumn leaves. He then tells me that his parents are in hospital visiting his young brother who has broken his leg. Naturally, I ask him how his brother broke his leg, and he eyeballs me again saying "I run him over."


I lamely squeak "By accident?"


"Nope, I drove right into him," he sneers. "He annoys the shit out of me, always whining. I slammed right into him. He was screaming, and I was laughing my head off."


My son Gus bought a tray of eggs the other day. One of the eggs was black inside. I said to Gus, "Gosh, a truly rotten egg. I met one the other day. He was riding a lime scooter up Hakanoa Street."





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11 Comments


Guest
Jun 02

so happy to be back.... I miss my writing but at times I am in a drought of words .... I blame it on climate change!

thnak you so much for your support of a novice.....

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Guest
Jun 02

I’ve just binged on all your latest blogs and filled my soul with your wacky and wonderful view of the world - far more rewarding than a boring box of chocolates.

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Guest
Jun 02
Replying to

Dear guest,

i have searched long and hard for a talent and your lovely comment ressures me I found one ...... a wacky perspective on things! I'm not sure it will get me far but just to know you enjoy it is enough for me... thank you

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Guest
Jun 01

Captured perfectly - unsettling though

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Guest
Jun 01

Thrilled you are writing again -giving us the real

Oil so to speak 🤗

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Guest
Jun 02
Replying to

I am emerging from a dark period and I had forgetten that writing nonsense helps me make sense of all the nonsense to me so thank you for reading my writing ... I mean couldn't bake cakes or savoury scones (though I don't bake)if no-one ate them could I? .... although I could give to the birds but not hese days of wokeness when the poor birds must be fed hard seeds in a gluey clump from garden centres...

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Guest
Jun 01

Wouldn’t like to be his parents 😤

And pleased you didn’t annoy the shit out of him ……….

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