It was pirate Tuesday at the local preschool and as I rushed to catch the bus, it was heartwarming to hear jubilant chatter and calls of excited children. Imagination piqued, they ran down footpaths in cheap costumes, waving plastic swords, an assortment of paper parrots perched on shoulders. There were almost equal numbers of Tinkerbell running the streets.
I volunteer at a women’s refuge once a month and knew some of these children. It required tact as strong as steel not to acknowledge those I recognised, even as some swayed in my direction, to confess some pirate secret, or some new heartbreak.
I was saved by the bus as it arrived, and abruptly swamped as it braked through a large puddle. My sapphire silk shirt now clung in the wrong places as I climbed the steps dripping and cursing, to see the driver hand held dramatically to his forehead, laughing. HIs face showed shame, mixed with concern.
‘So sorry, darling,’ he said. ‘My colleague distracted me with some story about his nephew being one of these crazed preschoolers, and the adventures they’d had kitting him out. I nearly missed the stop.’
‘It’s fine,’ I said. ‘I’ve a spare blouse at work. I’ve enjoyed watching the kids while I waited, so it was worth his effort.’
‘Where are you headed, love,’ the driver asked. Probably glad I wasn’t one of those cranky passengers.
‘Green Street, near the Pavilion,’ I said.
‘We’ll get you there, and you’ll be happy to know there’ll be no crocodiles, lost boys, or nasty hooked pirates. It’s the real world from now on,’ he said cheerily, and the door hissed shut as I took a seat.
‘I wouldn’t mind an adventure with a man with a hook,’ I whispered to myself, and watched the children stream into the schoolyard as we pulled away.
Written for Wordle #288 run by Lisa. Words to incorporate are:
pirate, forehead, imagine, footpath, abrupt, volunteer, colleague, sway, sapphire, pavilion, confess and tact.