The Sweeping Brush and Dustpan. (Part One)


Drip. Drop. Drip. Drop.

That’s the sound of the rain, banging against our window.

It’s another one of those dull grey days. Most people choose to stay inside.

However, Rocky and I decide to go for a walk. We’d never go for a stroll if it wasn’t raining. He’s a terrapin, which means he likes being wet. I’m a human and like getting soaked too. I look outside the window and smile.

“Great! Lots of puddles, Rocky!” I say and put my raincoat and wellies on.

Once outdoors, thick clouds of evermore rain force the few remaining people inside. Not Rocky and me. We like the rain. (The more, the better!).

We stroll along, jumping from puddle to puddle, splashing each other with water. Rocky takes the lead. He’s faster than you’d think.

“Wait up, Rocky!” I shout. He turns around and gives me one of his looks. He’s annoyed that I’m unable to keep up.

“My wellies are a size too big and I forgot to put two pairs of socks on!” I try to explain. Still, he’s determined to make the most of the puddles and the rain so ploughs on.

We continue to move by jumping from puddle to puddle. Rocky’s a couple of puddles ahead of me, when I notice that he stops in his tracks. I finally catch up and try to make out what he’s looking at. He’s mesmerised.

“Wow!” I say. 

In front of us, right in front of our eyes, there’s a sweeping brush and dustpan the size of a chubby cottage. The weird thing is that it’s moving on its own accord. There’s nobody here who’s controlling it. Sweep, sweep, sweep. It’s sweeping up all the dirt and rubbish around it, frantically.

“I don’t think it likes mess,” I say to Rocky. He nods and continues to watch. (I wish I could tell you that I’m no fan of mess either but the truth of the matter is that Rocky and I are rather on the messy side!)

The colossal brush continues to sweep empty crisp packets, expired bus tickets, chocolate wrappers, plastic bags and old chips (I know!) onto the pan. The contents are then emptied into a huge hole that reminds me of an ever-chewing mouth: greedy and ravenous.

“We could do with a hole like that,” I say to Rocky, who’s still observing the sweeping action. He glances my way, telling me to zip it, when it happens.

The giant brush catches sight of us. In one swift sweeping motion it moves our way, making bigger and faster brush-strokes. It is angry.

“Oh no, Rocky, what shall we do?” I say.  I’ve no intentions of being swept up or eaten alive by that ever-greedy mouth.

I panic. I want to scream but that wouldn’t be any use. There’s nobody here. Just Rocky, me, the giant brush and that chewing mouth in the ground. We have to think fast. The brush is approaching and is just about to sweep us up when Rocky does a star-jump and bites its handle.

The brush stops for a second, trying to process what has just happened. Rocky and I use the distraction and run, as fast as we possibly can, until we reach a puddle. We jump in with all our power, hoping to splash the brush senseless, when we fall and fall, down the puddle, ever downwards, at enormous speed.

“We need something to slow our fall!” I shout at Rocky. He thinks speedier than we plummet and motions that I should take his arms and legs. I do as he tells me and we almost stop mid-air. Rocky and his shell function as a parachute. We begin to float down gently now, descending into darkness, when I have an idea (I must add that I had five-bean-chilli for my tea).

I let out a fart and for a split second we begin to float upwards, not downwards. Rocky, who can’t hold his nose because I’m holding on to his arms and legs wretches but lets me know to try again.

I fart again and again for a split second we move upwards again, only to be pulled down shortly afterwards. I try again and the same happens. Until nothing happens.

“I’m all out of farts!” I apologise. Rocky looks confused. He doesn’t know whether to be relieved or worried.

I look down but all I can make out is black.

Suddenly, I see a faint light as we approach the end of our dive. We land softly on double yellow lines.

Rocky starts shaking his arms and legs out (they have been stretched to the maximum) when we catch sight of a sign. It says “Crafts”. There’s a door underneath the sign.

“Shall we go in?” I ask Rocky, who doesn’t seem to be sure. We look up to where we came from when we see outlines of the giant brush.

“Oh no, it must have followed us,” I whisper. We look at each other and open the door.

“An angry brush and dustpan, a hungry hole in the ground, a puddle passageway to an underground door leading to “Crafts”.  Whatever next?” I say as we enter, our hearts beating faster than a herd of running antelopes, and louder than a group of outraged drums.

Over and out.


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