‘LWG 10-minute exercise: The Bookshop Was Closed’
There was a note Blu-Tacked to the door, ‘Back in 10-minutes’, but, was that 10-minutes nearly up, or had that 10-minutes only recently started? Would 10-minutes see me inside the sanctuary of books, or would 10 become 20… or forever? I know that sometimes a note written to let people know when you’ll be back (in the case of Bookshop proprietors) should be literally the maximum time that you are going to be away – it should have a built-in allowance for delays and distractions – but, I am all too aware that life, being what it is, can put paid to the best laid plans of mice and people that run bookshops.
I made a decision. I would wait until twenty past (it being ten past now) based upon the premise that the note was freshly scribed and someone would be unlocking those doors any minute now.
People approached and passed me as I stood nervously upon the threshold of the haven of hallowed hardbacks (and, to be honest, a larger number of paperbacks) twiddling my thumbs (and flexing my index fingers – in the hope that they would be tracing down the spines all too soon).
There was a call from across the street, ‘I’ll be with you in a tick, sir.’ The lady from the bookshop! ‘Huzzah!’ I would soon be reunited with the papery stories and inky words.
I looked back at the note, ‘10-minutes!’ I had been right to wait.
There was a long screech of brakes. A thud. * A cry of pain.
I turned. ‘Oh, no!’ I howled dejectedly.
*This was where my 10-minutes ran out – which is quite ironic really.