Childhood
        
THE CHARABANC TRIP
by Ivor Biggun On the map of North Notts. you'll find Worksop Where I lived when I was a lad In a house with me Mam, two sisters and Gran One brother, a budgie and Dad. At the end of our street was a boozer Black as stout, uninviting and glum A den of devaprivity, it stank like a lavatory When me Dad went to hide from me Mum. At the end of the bar, in a bottle Every week, 'alf a dollar he'd slip For the annual treat, when the kids in our street Went to coast on a charabanc trip. We'd set off in morning from Worksop On route for Sutton-on-Sea With the holiday club... them as paid up their subs Half the street and me brother and me. There was old Mrs. Brough from the tripe shop Big soft Doris and her two little lasses And her sister, Ellen, with a bust like two melons And a face like an ars'ole with glasses. There was 'Perfumed Gordon', the hairdresser And nobody did make it clear Why a rude boy, named Taylor, cried out, "Hello sailor!" And something about ginger beer! There was 'Desperate Derek', his brother, 'Big Eric' And 'Basher' and 'Gnasher' and 'Butch' And Lil, who was willing for only a shilling Which was still about tenpence too much. There was Mavis who wouldn't, 'cos her mum said she shouldn't There was Neville who wished that she could, And then there was Heather who said that she'd never But looked like she probably would. Well my Dad took a crate of ale with him Intending to travel in style, Charabanc did about 25 miles to the gallon My Dad did about a half pint to the mile. Rain were chucking it down leaving Worksop Through North Notts it did not desist There were cows with bronchitis and wet sheep to invite us When Lincolnshire loomed through the mist. Rain slacked off soon to a medium monsoon And the day didn't look such a black'n When the driver, called Reg, pulled up at a hedge And we all made a break for the bracken. Dad rushed for a tree and he said, "Excuse me!" And right there, one penny he spent it He said, "Ain't it queer, one thing about beer, You don't really buy it... you rent it!" Well, this idylic scene, 'mid the nettles and steam Was soon torn by my brother's plainive cries, The poor little nipper caught his 'dong' in his zipper And was dancing with tears in his eyes. Then back on the coach, off to Sutton We got there, well eeh! it were grand And we gazed on the sea, cold... the colour of tea And smelled candy floss, dodgems and sand. There were shops full of rock and hats with rude slogans There was music and cries of hilarity There were games on the sand, there were jellied eel stands And souvenier shops packed with vulgarity. My brother ran down to the ocean His intention, the water to reach For his foot he'd just thrust in... something disgustin' A donkey had left on the beach. The sea was as cold as a polar bear's dick We watched Punch kill the crocodile, dead And after throwing some sand at the Salvation Army band We went off to the funfair, instead. There was a ride called 'The Comet', made you scream, faint and vomit Half deafened, you hung upside down And the last bit, a spinner... brought up the rest of your dinner Not bad y'know, for just half o' crown. There were cards with fat ladies, nudists and Scotsmen Honeymooners and dirty weekenders And in a machine... what the butler had seen Dimly flickered about in suspenders. We ate cockles and whelks and big winkles Soggy chips, toffee apples like glue The hot-dogs were funny'ns, something rude wrapped in onions But we ate them and pease pudding too. Then we went on the dodgems and waltzer And big dipper that rises and falls It was on this machine that my brother turned green And his eyes stood out like bulldogs balls. The poor little chap, he was sick in his cap It were his best'n... he started to cry So not wishing to spoil it, we swilled it in toilet And he wore it until it was dry. Then driver found us and said, "Back to the bus!" Through the dark, we ran the whole way Candy floss in our hair... but we didn't care Eeh!.. we'd had such a wonderful day. And with charabanc firing on several cylinders We set off for Worksop and home Rattling along highway singing songs of Max Bygraves Accompanied on paper and comb. In the dim orange glow of the coach-light, so low Courting couples were billing and cooing Hoping, perhaps, that the coats in their laps Would conceal the rude things they were doing. We pulled up in our street about half past eleven There was Mum, there was Granny an' all They gazed with admiration at the plastic alsation We'd won for 'em at coconut stall. I drank up my cocoa, I ate up my sandwich And soon up in bed I was curled I was dreaming a dream... I was leading the team On first charabanc trip around world. Eeh!... those things that I did... when I was a kid Although they were simple and small Now I'm grown up I find, I look back in my mind I'm sure they were best times of all. 'Cos I've been to Majorca and by... that's a corker I've been to Pompei and Hericolunamean The French Riviera where the ladies are barer I've even paddled in the Mediterranean. I've drunk various vino in Torremolinos But of all these I'll tell you for free There's none can compete with that charabanc treat With me brother... to Sutton on sea.
The end