Doubting Abraham-American dentist, Beatrice recalled being pinned in his chair,” he had an accent we could not understand,wet meaty hands and long nose hairs”. “He doubted Godfrey would ever grow teeth, he talked the whole time we gagged in pain,he doubted that the earth was round, he doubted summer would come back again, he doubted carrots, he doubted the tide, he lived over his office, as Dr Abraham doubted going outside.”
“I remember sad chairs and the Bible Stories and the fish in a bowl in the waiting room ,the drag marks left by Godfrey across his polished floor, and his screaming that could be heard in the building next door.”
“Well that day Godfrey left home he had not gone far, when along came Doubting Abraham’s car-” oh not doubting Abe Godfrey thought, I am free”, he said, “Abe leaned out the window and beckoned to me. Same wet hands, same accent, same nose-hairs long, he said farewell,good luck to you Godfrey, I doubt you will ever find a place to belong.” .”.care for your teeth Godfrey, now healthy and straight despite all the cakes and candy you ate”..The world is yours now, do not be a fool, take the pathway that calls you but don’t try to hitch, The Boring Road To Shrule”.
Godfrey told him I wont and I promise you I”ll keep dry feet and nice teeth thanks to you.” Abraham sped off, the gravel flew and chipped his front tooth he took so long to grew…it did not hurt or do much harm, all his life it somewhat suited his waifish charm.
MILK MAID GONE TO THE BAD-” When I met up with Godfrey he stood at our gate feeding apples to a cow, laughing as she ate”. “They crunch it whole he laughed, you can see it rolling down her throat”.I do not like cows said, I’m off on the evening boat.” I am Belle a milkmaid going to the bad, I will not be bound to cows like my old Mum and Dad have always had.”
“When he said his name was Godfrey, and that he disliked beets I looked him up and down”. “I was off to go bad in London Town. He carried an odd suitcase, he wore a kilt of plaid,he did not ask why I had chosen to go bad. He said he felt in the city are more nasty things you will meet, than cows with dirty tails and teats”.” Perhaps ill mannered persons, noise and hidden beets.” I myself am Australia bound far across the sea, by way of France but London next, why not hitch with me?”
They stayed in a Hostel,separate rooms across a hall, a list of rules was bolted to the wall. BEWARE OF PICKPOCKETS AND ITINERANT LOUTS, BEWARE OF LOOSE WOMEN, AND TAXI CAB TOUTS, ABSOLUTELY NO COOKING OF TURNIPS BEFORE NOON, NO CLEANING OF FISH OR GAME IN YOUR ROOM,WASH YOUR OWN DISHES IF YOU WANT TO ATE, NO BAKED BEANS OR LIVER LEFT ON THE HOT PLATE,PULL THE CISTERN CHAIN TWICE TO FLUSH THE MEN’S, ANY FOOD LEFT MORE THAN ONE DAY WILL BE FED TO THE HENS.WEARING OF VULGAR CLOTHING WE DO NOT ALLOW. This made Godfrey laugh and left me homesick for the cows.
BLESS THIS HOUSE KEEP IT FREE FROM BEETS, added Godfrey.” We bought eels from a barrow, we dodged traffic in the streets,we bought vulgar clothes at a market stall, he took my photo crossing Abbey Road and we waved to the Queen as she drove down Pall Mall”…And in the gloom beneath the arches a ragged old crone, shook her finger at me and screeched YOU MUST GO HOME!!! Go home to the farm and your good mum and dad, for long ago I to, was a milkmaid gone bad.” Yes we saw the sights of London, we parted in a cold rain,Godfrey bound for Dover, myself on the morning train. I went home to the cows and the green hills of Thwaite, where I met up with Godfrey feeding apples to the cow at our gate.” A much wiser milkmaid off the bad track, in my vulgar city clothes I went back”.
Now I am not sure but I think Godfrey had to know that the ragged old crone who neath the arches scared me so..was my own reflection in the shop window”.” I never heard from Godfrey or saw him again..but I remember him fondly, from Belle, an old friend…” Very little is known of the time between Godfrey’s leaving Phineas O’Grodnicks’ sheep farm, so we thank the now retired Belle for her story…