Carlotta and the Dead Man’s Handle

 

 

Sunday  I think? And another day on the beach.

So not that exciting for you chaps reading this. However….

One of the things I’d previously said about this year was the delight of having time to do things. And one of the things I’ve thought about doing is writing a book. Purely for my own entertainment, and not for publication. But I’m really enjoying writing the blog, so for now I’ll stick with that. And I’m sure some of you are thinking “Why is he wasting his time doing all this writing when he’s away on holiday?”. Quite simply, I’m really enjoying it, and this whole account is more for our benefit for our memories than for anyone else. We’re currently just relaxing and I have the time to do it. Maybe not so much in the future weeks.

Anyway, I thought I’d tell you a story today – it’s all true (ish) but I’ve changed the names of the main subjects to protect their dignity.

 

 

Paolo and Carlotta are a fictional couple from the Yorkshire spa town of Harrogate, travelling around the world on a crazy whim. So far they’ve made it to Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro. Here is a story about their day at the beach –

Paolo and Carlotta walked to the beach from their apartment. Paolo was still test driving his new Havaianas. What had once been a gentle 5 minute stroll had now become a 2hr endurance test, digging deep in to Paolo’s reserves of stamina and humiliation control. His walk resembled that of a new born foal on methadone. His toes were so blooded and gnarled and bruised that a passing Doctor stopped to enquire after his well being. However, Paolo was stubborn if nothing else and vowed to conquer these malfunctioning items of footwear even if it was the last bloody thing he ever sodding did! Flip-flops are so called because of the noise they make when any normal person walks in them. Therefore Paolo could only surmise that the lady in the Havaianas shop had used deft sleight of hand to exchange his chosen “flip-flops” for a pair of lesser known “shuffle-scrapes”, kept under the counter to palm off on the imbecilic English.
The situation wasn’t helped by the oil slick. Paolo was still suffering from perpetual wetness, and this mixed with the daily application of sun block created a look reminiscent of the Exxon Valdez disaster. A Green Peace ship was continuously monitoring his movements.
Still, on the positive side, Paolo was very pleased that he was rapidly progressing through the Dulux tanning colour chart. No longer was he British Lobster Pink, but now a promising English Blistered Crimson, having completely missed out the Scottish Ginger Napalm look.
Paolo was tired. He had been kept awake late into the night by random sporadic outbursts of uncontrollable laughter coming from the beautiful Carlotta. When pushed Carlotta had admitted that the hilarity was caused by intermittent memories of Paolo’s clown-like attempts to walk in his shuffle-scrapes….. Paolo was only very slightly hurt at such insensitive comments.
Anyway, arrival at the beach came with mixed blessings – great relief at the removal of the offending shoe wear, yet also fear at the inevitable impending pantomime that was about to ensue with the daily hiring of the sun loungers. Paolo had used the same lady’s sun-lounger emporium since day one. On day one she spoke brilliant English. She had recited the entire works of Shakespeare in perfect, unaccented, flowing monologue. However she’d obviously been suffering from some terrible medical issue because by today, day 4, English was an alien language to her. In fact she spoke even less English than your average Barnsley local. In fact Paolo wouldn’t have been surprised to hear her say “si’thee, tha nos”. For the next 20 minutes Paolo explained, pleaded and begged in a mixture of English, Spanish, French, Italian and German. But this lady was Portuguese, so all to no avail, and Paolo only succeeded in making himself look even more of a knob than normal…..
Finally, in possession of 2 sun loungers and a sun parasol (and a small albino Brazilian child that Paolo had misadvertently mimed into the negotiations), Paolo and Carlotta set up camp on the shores of paradise. To both their, now highly trained, eyes, it was immediately apparent that Sundays at Copacabana beach were reserved for the very finest female bottoms that Brazil had to offer. In fact Paolo believed that there may be patrolling Bottom Inspectors refusing access to any ladies with minor imperfections of the bum. Carlotta of course was safe in this respect.
After a refreshing swim, Paolo settled down in his lounger, Pink Floyd on the headphones, one eye closed, but one half open for the purposes of bottom-watch. He was very very content.

But Paolo had not taken into account Charlotte’s Dead Man’s Handle!
To explain – in days gone by, train drivers had a “dead man’s handle” in their cabs. This was a handle that needed to be pushed every few minutes, in effect to make sure the driver remained awake/alike. If not operated in time, the train would come to a shuddering halt.
Paolo strongly believed that Carlotta had a similar system fitted in her brain, which she believed would keep Paolo on his toes whenever required (and let’s face it, who could blame her?). It would be activated only at times when Paolo was feeling most restful, relaxed and at peace. Once activated, an alarm would sound every three minutes precisely in her head, and upon hearing this alarm Carlotta would have to issue Paolo an instruction or menial task. And so…..
3 minutes passes. PING!
Carlotta nudges Paolo. Paolo removes his headphones.
C – “Can you pass my sunglasses?”
(Later, on Sky Sports Jeff Stelling would demonstrate with the help of the special effects Skystrator, how the sunglasses were 3 inches from Carlotta , yet 47 inches from Paolo)
Paolo duly gets out of his lounger, gets the glasses and hands them to the very beautiful Carlotta. He sits back down, headphones on, dreaming of beer and bikinis….

3 minutes passes. PING!
Carlotta nudges Paolo. Paolo removes his headphones.
C – “Can you get the water from the bag for me?”
(A simple scientific study would show how the bag is within arms reach of Carlotta, yet 6 strides from Paolo. However, there are no simple scientists available at this time)
Paolo duly gets out of his lounger, gets the water from the bag, and hands it to the still beautiful Carlotta. He sits back down, headphones on, dreaming of more beer and more bikinis…..

3 minutes passes. PING!
Carlotta nudges Paolo. Paolo removes his headphones.
C – “Have we got any bananas?”
(Even a fool could see that the bananas are within 4mm of Carlotta , yet nowhere near Paolo)
Paolo duly gets out of the lounger, and hand feeds the bananas to the ever beautiful Carlotta. He sits back down, and gives up with his headphones and his dreams. He has seen his fate and accepts it happily with a smile on his face. The tablets are still working.

All is well with Paolo and Carlotta! And Paolo once again acknowledges that he really is the luckiest man alive!!

Right! Back to the real world now! Can’t believe I wrote that whilst sober!

Gosh indeed! Maybe Paolo and Carlotta will feature again one day in the next few months.

Tomorrow is Charlotte’s 58th birthday, and we’re going to celebrate at the top of Sugar Loaf Mountain! If Carlsberg did husbands…… (Draft note, edit that bit out before publishing because you may well be pushing it a bit far there Rock)

Beer of the day - Skol 360* A more sensible sized 600ml bottle, selling at £1.50 just one block back from Copacabana Beach. Very civilised.

Beer of the day – Skol 360*
A more sensible sized 600ml bottle, selling at £1.50 just one block back from Copacabana Beach. Very civilised.

Our current favourite little street bar, Ziza Bar. Knocks spots off the P&P. And much cheaper despite my discount!

Our current favourite little street bar, Ziza Bar. Knocks spots off the P&P. And much cheaper despite my discount!

Always good to find where the locals drink. Surely won't be long know till I'm on staff discount rates.....

Always good to find where the locals drink. Surely won’t be long now till I’m on staff discount rates…..

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Carlotta and the Dead Man’s Handle

  1. Who’s ghost-writing this blog whilst you too are obviously fabricating the whole thing from a cheap photographic studio in Flamborough ?
    My guess is the late Spike Milligan…
    Anyway, very amusing, and Happy Birthday Charlotte.

    Like

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