Shot to shreds


TEAM BIGGS, as slick and well organised a team as you could wish to meet, were participating in the Almanzora Group of Friends Treasure Hunt.

We had successfully hunted our way up into the Albox Old Quarter, and as Team Clue Finder I had gone ahead to seek the next conundrum, so that we could collectively cogitate on the answer – How many knockers are there on the door of no. 22?

As I stood perplexed in a whole streetfull of numberless doors I became aware that I was under intense scrutiny by one of Albox’s more senior ladies.

‘Which is number 22?’ I indicated the houses lining the street.

She looked at me as if I were a new and interesting addition to a petting zoo.

I rephrased. ‘Which house is number 22?’

The Matriarch of Calle Rosario, dressed in her best blue floral housecoat and brown slippers, was not forthcoming with the answer, or indeed any answer. She continued to gaze enthralled on this strange phenomenon that was me.

‘I am looking for house number 22.’ I reiterated. I could see she was struggling with the complexity of the question, so I didn’t attempt further explanation.

She moved closer, inspected my face intently and smiled an immaculately dentured smile, only spoiled by the remnants of her lunch nestling securely between her teeth.

‘I don’t understand you.’ With that she shrugged her shoulders and shuffled placidly back into her house, leaving me to think – All those Spanish lessons, shot to shreds by that one phrase!