After we’d spent the best part of last Saturday at the car boot sale, our neighbour waited a few days but then couldn’t contain herself.
“Where’ve you been? We’ve hardly seen you,” she said.
“We’ve been getting rid of some stuff at car boot sales,” said Entrepreneurial Partner. (NB note to all dog lovers – this did not include selling the dog in the above photo.)
“Well did you make anything?” she asked nosily.
“About 40€ on Saturday in the local town” he said. Not one to let the facts get in the way of the story, although we did make more than 30€.
So fast forward to another of the family-next-door’s lunchtime conversations…….(following on from Listening to the neighbours back in May).
“Oooooh, we haven’t got any money,” said the (40+year-old) daughter as usual.
“We can’t afford to go anywhere, we can’t buy our whisky and cigarettes,” she moaned.
Her (80-year-old, walks three miles a day) father was just waiting for this. He’d obviously been brought up to speed by his wife.
“That couple next door have been to the market. He made 60€.” (Also not one to let the facts get in the way of the story).
“They aren’t even Spanish.
“Why don’t you do that?” he blasted.
“It’s my only day off.” (She cleans for three or four mornings a week).
“He probably sold to foreigners anyway,” she said.
“No he didn’t, all except for three of his customers were Spanish,” he replied.
“He’s not just sitting around and moaning. Why don’t you do it?” he persisted.
“Can’t get the stuff in the car,” said the son-in-law grumpily on one of his rare forays into these father-daughter arguments.
“Make two trips,” snapped back his wife’s father (well on form).
“Don’t want. We’ve got better things to do on Saturday.
“I should be able to get work in my village,” was his parting shot, as he sulked off in a huff….
…To go and watch the TV in their small house, built by him and his father-in-law, on his father-in-law’s ground. The ownership of the property has recently been transferred from the father to his daughter. The son-in-law is not on the deeds.
There is no mortgage on the property. Never has been. And for all the time he has been working, do they have any savings? No. What are they living on? Mostly the old couple’s pension that stretches to feed and pay bills for six, plus the cleaning money earned by the daughter.
Oh, and his car, which he doesn’t use too much at the moment, had no local road tax earlier in the year (we heard the tax officer coming round to hassle him about it), and he didn’t bother replacing the MOT/roadworthy certificate & sticker when it expired last year.
Back to the conversation. The son who-fell-off-the-pushbike and still isn’t back in school piped up.
“Only foreigners who don’t have any respect for themselves would be prepared to do that on a Saturday morning,” he said arrogantly.
“I’ve told you before, stop disrespecting the neighbours,” his mother shouted at him.
“I’ve heard enough. Get out of the way.”
So the two teenage sons limped off the ten yards to their house with their tails between their legs, to join their equally out-of-favour father.