Tuesday, 21 August 2018

What Price Good Manners...

My brother James and me have recently returned from France.  Our journey home was mostly uneventful apart from one particular campsite where we had the dreadful misfortune to meet Mr and Mrs Insulting.
Let me explain.  Having arrived at this particular site, we were only staying the one night, Monsieur very kindly showed us where to park.  And, clearly having taken account of my delicate skin, he put us in a lovely shady spot under a large tree.  What a nice man!
Now the passports were in their usual place under the camping equipment so, after James had put up the tent, I had to trot down to the office to register properly.  As I got there I noticed that a campervan with English plates had arrived and that the occupants were inside the tiny room.  Naturally, having impeccable manners myself, I waited outside.  When their business was complete the couple emerged and I wished them a hearty 'good afternoon.'  For which I received nothing other than a look of disdain.  I gave them the benefit of the doubt and assumed that they had probably had a difficult journey.
My business completed I emerged from the office to hear Monsieur directing the new arrivals to their spot.
“You see the English car over there on your right, you can park on the far side of—”
“Oh, we don't want to be near the English,” said Mr Insulting.
Monsieur glanced at me and realised I had overheard.  He nodded to me and I began to walk back to the tent.
“You own a campervan,” said Monsieur. “I own a camping site. Let me decide.”
I had to agree with him. What a very nice man!  Back at the tent, I mentioned the incident to James.
A few moments later, when I was settled with my book under our lovely shady tree, I saw the campervan heading our way.  Mr Insulting pulled into the spot next to us.  Now, I can do disdain myself, exceptionally well, when I have to.  And this was one of those occasions, for which only the tent flap flip, delivered with complete and utter disdain will do.  I executed the move perfectly and returned to my book.
As Mr Insulting came round to where we were sat to plug in his electricity cable, James said, “You’ll be all right parked next to us.  We’re not English, we’re from Yorkshire. Just like you are.”
It was then that I looked at their number plate carefully.  
So, Mr and Mrs Insulting from Scarbrough, I hope your manners will have improved by the time you return to the UK.

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