It was very different, not like on the headland. There were lots of M‑E‑N about. She did not know what to do, there were so many – there had been none on the headland, just the very nice vicar about a month ago. And there is an M‑A‑N here, she could feel it, but she could not see the M‑A‑N, until this very moment.
The M‑A‑N appeared out the crowd and made a beeline for her. No, no, no, it could not be, M‑E‑N did not fit into her life, just ironing. She was Mrs Happy and she was proud of it and the ironing that she does. What to do?
She asked Nickel, she often asked Nickel. It was odd, Nickel was odd, but in a different way to M‑E‑N. But Nickel was different, very different to Mrs Happy, who was very quiet except when she was ranting, which wasn’t very often. Nickel was loud, she danced about, she ‘it people. she was violent, she hit M‑E‑N, she had killed the Breaker Boys. Mrs Happy had seen her do this. But Nickel was always ready to help, Mrs Happy liked her.
Nickel told her about M‑E‑N, at first she could not believe it, but Nickel insisted, how could Nickel be wrong, Mrs Happy had to believe what Nickel said.
The next time they were out on the street Mrs Happy spotted the M‑A‑N, he was just right, he was a young M‑A‑N, but Nickel was by her side. Mrs Happy pointed at the man, Nickel knew what to do: pick him up, throw him over her shoulder (fireman’s lift) and carry him back to the other house. The young man objected, other people in the street objected. “You can’t just pick up people and carry them away; that’s kidnapping, it’s against the law.” Nickel just laughed.
Mrs Happy had a good time with the young M‑A‑N, though she needed some encouragement from Nickel to begin with. But after three days the other house had to move on to another country.
News of Mrs Happy had spread, there was a queue of M‑E‑N around the whole block. Mrs Happy pointed out the ten best-looking M‑E‑N and Nickel pulled them out.
“There they are, ten of them. You choose, Mrs Happy.”
“Oh yes, all ten of them.”