an ale tale
Ken P Duddle
Gramps picked up three empty glasses with one hand and placed them on the bar. He returned to the table and sighed. Gramps was not as old as his nickname implied. He was in fact only 41. His nickname came about a couple of years before when his daughter presented him with a grandson and after a celebratory lock-in some of the regulars decided it would be a fitting name. So the name stuck.
Gramps stood by the table where the three remaining and best customers of The Crown sat. Mick the Tick, Robert and Dangler with his dog Boozer. Mick was known for trying every new beer that came on the market, in the shortest time possible. Dangler, blind for more years than he cared to remember, was accompanied by his faithful companion Boozer who some said was the more intelligent of the two. Robert preferred the company of his friends to that of his wife who since his retirement seemed to be more talkative.
Gramps leaned over to Robert, 'Robert, when you have finished talking about trains, can you help Mick leave I wanna lock up.' He nodded in Mick's direction who was bent forward head resting on one arm and an hand clasped around a partly drunk pint of light ale.
'Sure, Gramps.' He leant over to Mick and gently shook his shoulders. 'Mick wake up, Gramps wants us outa here.'
Mick woke up with a start. 'Wha! is it drinking up time already? He lifted the glass he was holding and drank it in one go. 'One for the road Gramps? he asked. Gramps shook his head. 'Sorry Mick, cannot do.'
The three friends rose from their seats and made their way towards the exit. Boozer leading, closely followed by Dangler and Robert who was helping Mick to walk straight.
Gramps picked up the remainng glasses and took them to the bar. He returned to the table and grunted as he wiped the table surface with a damp cloth. He never did much like the name Gramps but thought it was at least better than his previous nickname, Grumps. He sighed to himself as he thought.
'Well another day over and another exciting one to look forward to tomorrow.
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