Now then, who on earth is this character helping out at one of the last working parties of the year? He looked rather familiar, but no one could quite place him. “He looks a bit like John, er, John Wotsit, our chairman,” said Colin. “No, no,” said Harold. “John’s just the chairman. He doesn’t actually do any work. He’s more of a sort of figurehead. He wanders around chatting to people.
That’s his role – not shoving a loaded wheelbarrow around.” Alan was equally puzzled: “Who’s this John East you’re talking about?” he asked. “Our chairman,” explained Patrick. “What does he do, then,” asked Alan. “Dunno,” said Patrick. “He chairs the occasional meeting and, er, and, er … takes his dog for a walk while we are grafting away, and, er, talks a lot.” Perhaps a local borough councillor had decided to help? suggested Jill with her tongue firmly in her cheek. Everybody cracked out laughing. We finally worked it out – thanks to Len and Rosemary, with a bit of help from Paul.
To see the well-wrapped up Mystery Man unmasked …
Mystery Man revealed
Yes, it was Our John after all! “I got fed up with Harold moaning that I never got my hands dirty so I carted a couple of loads of wood chippings up to the ashes circle,” he explained. “But it was raining a bit and I soon got fed up. I was out of breath and couldn’t talk to anyone. It was awful. But they can’t moan now. I’ve actually done something!” However, he added ominously: “Never again!
FODC October 2011