The nutty neighbours of.., p.1
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       The Nutty Neighbours of Possum Road, p.1

           Iron Geoffrey
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The Nutty Neighbours of Possum Road













  Copyright © 2016

  All rights reserved.








  Fearless David’s life had so far been fairly uneventful, but this was all about to dramatically change now he was living in Bottomhamsted.

  David woke up suddenly on the morning of his first day at his new school. His head was full of questions and he was so nervous that he felt sick. Were there any mean people in his new class? How many times a day would he be shouted at by a furious teacher? Would a huge school bully push him into the path of an on-coming combine harvester?

  He slowly packed his bag, and then walked nervously out of the door and off towards his new school. As he approached the school playground, he could hear shrieking sounds, but could not be sure if it was just the sound of good humoured boisterousness or screams of pain. Before David entered the playground, he decided it might be wise to hide behind a lamp post for a while and watch what was going on. From the safety of the lamp post, he first noticed that the middle of the playground was full of what appeared to be a group of ruffians, all shouting and violently barging into each other. David thought that one of these ruffians might have said a rude word, but he couldn’t be certain. One of the boys then looked over towards the lamp-post where David was hiding, so he made himself as thin as possible. Luckily the ruffian didn’t notice him.

  On the other side of the playground he could see an ice-cream van being rocked violently from side to side by another group of hooligans. It looked like the ice-cream man was desperately trying to serve ice-creams, while a scrum of maniacs were fighting and shoving in an effort to get served first. A teacher even appeared to have been crushed under the weight of the frenzied ice-cream queue.

  This continuous shoving and barging was causing the ice-cream van to become extremely unstable. David watched in amazement as the van was rocked so violently from side to side that it was now up on two wheels, then dramatically the ice-cream van was pushed over onto its side, landing with a loud crunch on the ground.

  The scrum of troublemakers all cheered loudly, then scrambled inside the up-turned ice-cream van to steal lollies and gobstoppers. The maniacs then ran off, throwing the hard gobstoppers at any weak people or teachers as the ice-cream man ran after them shaking his fist angrily.


  Large and very hard sweets, which are impossible to bite through. Before eating, they have to be smashed on rocks. Often used as missiles by tough boys and hard cases.

  David liked the look of the school so far but continued to observe what was happening in the playground for a little longer.

  Near the school gate was a small fenced off area, which was lower down than the rest of the playground. David could just about see that an unfortunate young apprentice teacher had strayed into this area, and was now surrounded by a jostling ring of wild youths. A few of them had made some fireworks in a science lesson, which they were now lighting and throwing at him. The young teacher looked terrified but thankfully did not actually appear to be on fire. It later turned out that the fireworks were pretty useless, as they had been made by a group of dunces. Then David saw one smartly dressed but very foolish boy produce what looked like a World War 2 grenade from his bag and pull the pin out! Everybody scattered in all directions as the device exploded, blowing the smart but foolish boy off his feet and creating a large hole in the playground! David never discovered what the device actually was, but it certainly went off with a big bang.

  Despite some initial doubts, David decided that his new school would probably be a welcoming and positive educational environment, so he boldly emerged from behind the safety of the lamp-post and proceeded to walk confidently through the gates.

  Unfortunately he was wrong about this, as some bad boys immediately scooped him up and threw him head first into a large skip full of discarded skewers. Luckily all the skewers were made of rubber as they were left over from last year’s ‘Rubber Skewer Festival’ so no permanent damage was done. Slightly dazed, he scrambled back out of the skip and made his way to his first lesson, which was with a teacher called Mrs Wigglit.

  His new teacher was known for being very disorganised as she was always losing things, but she had an interesting method of trying to find the items she had lost earlier in the day. Mrs Wigglit would walk backwards through the school, believing she would actually be travelling back through time.

  This method of finding lost items often worked, but was less unsuccessful when she once tried to turn back time in her car. She had driven away from the supermarket with her shopping on the roof of the car, and it had fallen off when she went round a corner. When she realised this, she tried to turn back time by stopping the car and suddenly driving backwards. Unfortunately, she reversed straight into a huge army tank, which happened to be following her, and her car was totally flattened.

  Miraculously, Mrs Wigglit was completely unharmed although her car was as flat as a pancake.

  Following David’s negative experience with the rubber skewers, he entered Mrs Wigglit's classroom less confidently. He sat down at the back of the class and put an empty rubbish bin over his head, hoping nobody would notice him. Mrs Wigglit then arrived, sat down at the front of the class and started shuffling papers.

  “I see we have a new comedian in the class” she said sharply.

  David slowly removed his clever disguise and was very relieved when nobody bothered to look round.

  “Could you introduce yourself?” said Mrs Wigglit.

  “Good morning my name is David” he said, confident that his name was fairly normal and unlikely to attract any kind of ridicule.

  Strangely, the complete opposite happened. Mentioning the name ‘David’ caused an eruption of hysterics and the whole class started rolling around on the floor, laughing uncontrollably. Even Mrs Wigglit had trouble keeping a straight face.

  “HIS NAME IS DAVID!!!” the classmates all shouted, in fits of laughter.

  The announcement of David’s name even caused one boy to laugh too much, and he actually fainted. An ambulance was called and the boy was rushed to hospital.


  Schoolboys often pretend to faint to avoid doing their homework. If the schoolboy who has fainted, also stops breathing, it may be something more serious.

  David later discovered that there was another boy called David in the school who was a world famous blithering idiot, and that the very mention of his name would result in howls of laughter.

  Mrs Wigglit then asked David where he lived and he replied “Possum Road”. The reaction to this simple fact was equally surprising.

  The class fell silent as everybody stopped laughing immediately and looked straight at David.

  “You must be a total buffoon ‘cos that’s where Mrs Wigglit lives” they all said together at exactly the same time.

  David wanted to escape from this strange behavior, and was about to put the bin back on his head, when Mrs Wigglit suddenly announced:

  “Our next few lessons will be dedicated to the history of Bottomhamsted, and also to the fascinating residents of Possum Road”.

  David decided this could be very interesting and that it would be a great opportunity to find out about his new village, so abandoned the idea of putting the bin back on his head. Mrs Wigglit then started the lesson with a historical introduction to Bottomhamsted.

  “Possum Road is situated in our flatulent village of Bottomhamsted, and is home to an astonishing collection of characters. Our village is commonly known as a flatulent village because Bottomhamsted’s original settlers suffered from a hereditary condition, which caused excessive and embarrassing wind. Due to the unique atmospheric qualities only to be found in Bottomhamsted, excessive wind-breaking would cause a heavy methane fog to build up and could be extremely hazardous, should there be any kind of spark or fire”.

  David found the introduction intriguing and raised an eyebrow, as Mrs Wigglit continued talking.

  “Historians tell us that many of the original buildings were destroyed in 1709 by an unfortunate methane explosion. The story goes, that the methane fog was ignited by some stray sparks, which were generated during a daring sword-fight. Apparently, two flatulent gentlemen were settling a dispute over a flatulent maiden when the terrible accident happened. This condition is now very rare but the villagers still live in fear of another wind-based blast. This interesting history is said to have influenced the local flag, which simply features ‘The Famous Peg’. The type of peg a person might put over ­their nose when becoming aware of an offensive stink”.

  David thought this information about the local area was absolutely
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