I must tell you this one.
My lady wife manages nursing homes. Private sector, you know 60 hour weeks, day and night never ending phone calls, minimum wage carers who work their socks off and an inspection regime that sometimes makes her eyes water – not quite the NHS I think you will agree.
Anyway, not so long ago one of the bathrooms in her particular nursing home required some upgrading, so in come some cocky young tilers to finish off the work. As you can imagine the two tilers in question thought they had arrived in heaven, their eyes couldn’t stop glancing in the direction of dusky maidens from the East, Romanian beauties and a smattering of pretty dark haired lovelies with a Brythonic past.
Mugs of tea, cheeky flirting and thinking they were Cadbury’s chocolate were the order of the day. Youthful lady killing ardour had arrived and the girls were not going to be allowed to forget it.
Well, Friday arrived and the young fellows were raring to go. It was the weekend so a time for love, kisses and umpteen pints of Stella were on the horizon – along with sexy humour and ‘Aren’t we the best looking chaps in the village’.
The girls were not impressed, but the tilers kept trying all the same and let’s face it, who could blame them?
The weekend came and went. The tilers returned on the Monday morning to finish off the job, somewhat the worse for wear it must be said, Stella Artois had done its job alright.
Into the bathroom they went, when all of a sudden there were yelps of disgust, retchings in the sink and wails of ‘Oh God! Matron! Matron! Please Matron!’
My wife, said Matron, rushed in to see what all the commotion was about, only to find two green coloured and exceptionally subdued tilers pointing at a red bucket with a lid on it.
“In there Matron!” they pleaded. “It’s in there!”
My wife walked over to the bucket and lifted the lid, the smell was a tad overpowering but being totally inured to nursing home eccentricity, she looked inside, smiled and said to the tilers, “That will teach you, won’t it? Not so cocky now are we?”
Sometime during the weekend a dear old lady had wandered into the unfinished bathroom and mistaken the red bucket for the toilet. Bowel movements are non-negotiable in nursing homes, you understand.
She had also left her handbag sitting beside the red bucket, bless her!
Julian is the author of the Ragged Cliffs Trilogy and legal thriller The Bent Brief. He is also a weekly columnist (Letter from Wales) for Westminster’s Labour Uncut and makes contributions to both Welsh and national media broadcasting.