This post was updated on .
I once read that whether one is speaking or writing, nobody should use a long word when a short word would suffice. However, the article went on to say that you should never use a short word when a long word would be better and to me that makes enormous sense. That's the advice I have always followed. I have also tried to use that creed with regard to the length of my various 'Cosy' stories. The 'Walt and Ruby Story' had to be lengthy, for there was so much that had to be told. This next memory will, therefore, be short, for it for it's about a single meal and a fear of illness that made my brother Len go hungry.
It was during one of his earlier trips to Wales, probably in the early 1990's, and it became obvious to me that Len was not enjoying his meal. He was using his fork to prod at his food and although he ate the occasional grain of rice and the odd crispy vegetable, I could tell he was not happy. My Jenny, as all who know her would agree, is a good cook, and she took pride in serving our guests interesting and varied dishes. This one was as close to a Chinese meal as Bob had ever had and, despite his comments that the crispy vegetables were under cooked, he obviously enjoyed his meal immensely, he even had a large second helping. Len, however, ate very little of his food, and he seemed to be almost examining it as he moved it around with his fork. I knew this puzzled Jenny, for like me she remembered a fine evening in Guildford's 'Three Kingdoms' restaurant, when both Len and his wife Pam enjoyed their Chinese adventure .
Three hours passed and I was standing at the bar of my village pub. As always, even if they are twenty feet away from me, I could hear the conversation of my two rather deaf brothers. As I ordered the next round of drinks I heard Len say to Bob in a voice he thought was a whisper, "You're going to be ill in the morning!" I heard Bob ask why was that ? and then I heard Len reply in his same loud whisper, "Because that pork wasn't properly cooked, the meat was still pink!" After a few seconds of silence, Bob informed Len that there was no pork in that nights meal and what everyone else had so enjoyed were in fact something called, Pacific King Prawns. Lens reply I will always remember for in a crestfallen voice he said to Bob, "BUGGER, I LOVE PRAWNS!"
I told you this was a short story, but it's one that always makes me chuckle. Even more so when I picture Len prodding away at what he thought was definitely some uncooked pork. I do, however, sometimes wonder why he waited for three hours before warning his brother Bob of his impending food poisoning!