Ruthie leant forward, clutching at the wall for balance.
‘Go on then,’ she urged, ‘Just slide yourself underneath.’
I looked down and winced.
‘I can’t… it’s… it’s too wet down there.’
‘Oh, don’t be a wimp. Get on with it, I’m getting cold.’
‘My back hurts,’ I protested.
‘That’s why we’re doing it remember? To get the weight off? Now… just ignore the splashes and the damp and you’ll have some great photos for your blog.’
Three hours earlier…
‘Roaches?’ I asked.
I wasn’t happy. To be honest, I wished that I hadn’t even mentioned my ballooning weight concerns over breakfast. Because now Ruthie was trying to organise some kind of Celebrity Get Me Out of Here diet. I clutched my bacon and egg sarnie nervously.
‘Cockroaches? You want me to eat cockroaches?’
‘Oh, I see! You meant the fish didn’t you? Well, just for your information, the plural of roach – the fish – is roach, not roaches.’
‘It’d be like going to the fishmonger and asking for some salmons, or some cods.‘
I could sense an outburst coming on. I upped my ante. ‘Oh, yes, I’d like some fishes and chips please. No, no! How’s about a baguette of tunas. Or -‘
The outburst never came. Ruthie just said calmly, ‘What about pilchards? Or sardines? Or-‘
‘Ok! You didn’t mean fish did you?’
Looking back, I regret interrupting her, because now I’m sitting here wondering what the third example of a fish plural was that she was about to mention…
‘We’re going the The Roaches. In North Staffordshire. There’s this standing stone – The Bawd Stone. That’ll get some of the weight off you.’
I frowned. ‘How so?’
‘You’ll see,’ smiled Ruthie, ‘You’ll bloody well see.’