Needless to say sleep was a very much a stranger to Darrell and myself last night for worrying about Nigel, we made cups of tea throughout our ordeal, but I am afraid most were left to go cold.
As day dawned Darrell and I got back on the phone, but Darrell was beginning to show signs of loosing the plot, so I am afraid I had to tell him, VERY robustly, to pull himself together “and grow some!”, quite where I got such a crude phrase from goodness only knows, but it seemed to do the trick.
However once again, all we got was a constant, constant ringing. It was early, I reasoned ….. people have to unlock and attend to early morning retail duties ….. I would continue to phone, but at intervals …. but still nothing. It was the longest, longest morning ever …..
Then, at about 11o’clock our phone rang, it was DiscountUK, they understood we’d been ringing them ……. oh mon dieu, my words just spilt out in an almighty verbal torrent, “I don’t suppose you’ve found a small monkey answering to the name of Nigel have you?”, I blurted, not daring to contemplate mine or Darrell’s reaction if the answer had been no.
“OMG yes,” I cried “Have you got him?”
“ We have indeed” was the reply “We took him back to the office after closing time, he was found in the Seasonal Produce section after we’d locked up, totally oblivious that we had closed!” ……
“We’ll come and collect him right now!” I cried “ Thank you, thank you sooooooooo much!”
“Well…… erm, perhaps, maybe not today?” replied the gentleman “Obviously, we didn’t want to leave him alone in the shop overnight ….. he’s rather a character isn’t he? One of the lads took a such shine to him he offered to put him up for the night to meet his own Monkey, and he’s had such a wonderful time he’s still there!!!!!!”
The relief that filled mine and Darrell’s heart was much, much more than either palpable and tangible and even robust didn’t touch it …… Nigel was safe, that’s all that mattered, but goodness only knows why he didn’t tell them where he lived, all the excitement of a shop lock in and the prospect of a sleepover with a new friend must have just turned his head …….
It was agreed that Nigel could stay another night, he had been not an ounce of trouble and would be waiting at the middle checkout with the gentleman who had taken such an aforementioned shine to him when he came in to do the 2.30 shift …… when, hopefully a much more composed Darrell, could collect him and bring him safely home, back to Castle Greysquirrel!
OH NIGEL, what are you like???? !!!